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Are dark brown spots in the inner labia minora a cause for concern?

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Posted on Thu, 12 May 2016
Question: Last night my husband noticed a patch of dark brown spots just inside my vagina. I have no idea how long these have been there. My last pap was a year ago which came back normal. I'm 46, are these types of patches normal with aging or should I follow up with an exam? I do not have any pain associated with them, the skin is smooth and is not raised.
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Answered by Dr. Rakhi Tayal (5 hours later)
Brief Answer:
Can be harmless pigmentation.

Detailed Answer:
Hello,
Thanks for trusting us with your health concern.
Colour changes such as black spots/ brown spots / patches are common In the inner labia minora. Most of the times, these are harmless pigmentation changes, but you need a check up by a doctor to tell which ones are melanomas ( potentially cancerous ) . These spots might require skin testing or serial follow up to determine if they are benign or not.
Sometimes the spots are also related to hormonal changes during the menstrual cycle or due to ingestion of certain medications.
Meanwhile, allergy to latex, medicated tampons or sanitary pads, douches, lotions, gels, cleansers, wipes etc also causes chronic colour changes in the genital area.
Please consult a Gynecologist for the exact diagnosis, and appropriate testing.
Meanwhile, please avoid touching / eroding / squeezing the area.
Since it is painless and does not itch, do not use any kind of medication or ointment till the diagnosis is confirmed.
Meanwhile, get yourself and your partner thoroughly checked for STD s, as some of them might present atypical.
Please feel free to discuss further. I will be glad to answer the follow up queries that you have.
Wishing you good health.
Regards.
Dr. Rakhi Tayal.
For future query, you can directly approach me through my profile URL http://bit.ly/Dr-Rakhi-Tayal

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Answered by
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Dr. Rakhi Tayal

OBGYN

Practicing since :2001

Answered : 13884 Questions

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Are dark brown spots in the inner labia minora a cause for concern?

Brief Answer: Can be harmless pigmentation. Detailed Answer: Hello, Thanks for trusting us with your health concern. Colour changes such as black spots/ brown spots / patches are common In the inner labia minora. Most of the times, these are harmless pigmentation changes, but you need a check up by a doctor to tell which ones are melanomas ( potentially cancerous ) . These spots might require skin testing or serial follow up to determine if they are benign or not. Sometimes the spots are also related to hormonal changes during the menstrual cycle or due to ingestion of certain medications. Meanwhile, allergy to latex, medicated tampons or sanitary pads, douches, lotions, gels, cleansers, wipes etc also causes chronic colour changes in the genital area. Please consult a Gynecologist for the exact diagnosis, and appropriate testing. Meanwhile, please avoid touching / eroding / squeezing the area. Since it is painless and does not itch, do not use any kind of medication or ointment till the diagnosis is confirmed. Meanwhile, get yourself and your partner thoroughly checked for STD s, as some of them might present atypical. Please feel free to discuss further. I will be glad to answer the follow up queries that you have. Wishing you good health. Regards. Dr. Rakhi Tayal. For future query, you can directly approach me through my profile URL http://bit.ly/Dr-Rakhi-Tayal