I’ve always thought that the vagina and the vulva refer to the same area. Can you explain the anatomical difference between the two body parts and what is the specific function of the Vulva?

May 03 2019 Gynaecology Self care

The vagina refers to the elastic muscular tube extending from the external genitals to the neck of the womb (cervix). It is a reproductive conduit connecting the external environment to the internal genitalia. During sexual intercourse, it receives the penis and allows the sperm to swim up into the womb. Conversely, it allows blood flow to be expelled from the womb during menstruation, and the baby during vaginal childbirth.

The vulva refers to the external female genital organs which are composed of the mons pubis, labia majora and minora, clitoris, urethral opening, vestibule and perineum.

The labia majora refers to the large, fleshy folds of tissue that enclose and protect the other external genital organs. The labia minora lie just inside the labia majora and surround the vestibule, which is the area around the openings to the vagina and urethra. A rich supply of blood vessels gives the labia minora a pink colour. The clitoris is a small protrusion at the upper end between the labia minora. The urethral opening allows the passage of urine. The perineum refers to the area between the vagina and anus.

Dr. Tan Toh Lick
3 April 2019