What is Vulvar Cancer?

Cancer of the vulva affects the external female genital organs, including the clitoris, vaginal lips and the opening to the vagina. Though commonly found in older adults, vulvar cancer can happen at any age.

Symptoms of Vulvar Cancer

  • Vulvar itching that does not go away
  • Pain and tenderness surrounding the vagina
  • Vaginal bleeding
  • Skin changes on the vulva
  • Wartlike bumps or open sores on the vulva

Treatment for Vulvar Cancer

Surgery for Vulvar Cancer

The most common vulvar cancer treatment is surgery. The goal is always to remove the cancer without any loss of the woman's sexual function. One of the following types of surgery may be done:

  • Wide local excision that removes the cancer and a margin of healthy tissue.
  • Radical local excision to remove the cancer and a large amount of normal tissue around it.
  • Vulvectomy to remove part or all of the vulva.
  • Pelvic exenteration to remove the cervix, vagina, ovaries, lower colon, rectum, bladder and nearby lymph nodes.

Radiation Therapy for Vulvar Cancer

Even if the surgeon removes all the cancer visible at the time of surgery, some patients may be given further vulvar cancer treatment such as Even if the surgeon removes all the cancer visible at the time of surgery, some patients may be given further vulvar cancer treatment such as chemotherapy or radiation therapy after surgery. This further treatment helps kill any remaining cancer cells.  or radiation therapy after surgery. This further treatment helps kill any remaining cancer cells. 

Why Choose Memorial Hermann for Treatment?

Memorial Hermann Cancer Centers are accredited by the American College of Surgeons’ (ACoS) Commission on Cancer (CoC). This rare distinction is given to cancer programs that uphold the highest standard of care for patients. When you choose Memorial Hermann Cancer Centers for your cancer treatment, you can rest assured you will receive the best possible care delivered by a compassionate team of caregivers in a calm, healing environment.

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For more information about Memorial Hermann Cancer Centers, including how to get connected to our support services or an affiliated provider, please call (833) 770-7771 or fill out the form below to be connected to one of our Oncology Nurse Navigators.

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