Sexually Transmitted Diseases/Opening of vagina.


2nd photo
2nd photo  
Vaginal opening
Vaginal opening  
QUESTION: Does the opening of my vagina look normal? I'm a week out from my period and it's been a little sore the past couple of days. Haven't had intercourse in a week so ruling that out on why it's sore...

ANSWER: Hello Jasmine,
The opening of the vagina looks normal, however the area of more redness near your finger suggests a mild inflammation from something.  Redness is caused by dilated blood vessels, and that happens in response to inflammation, irritation, infection.  Although it may sound odd, apply moist heat to the area for comfort, or alternately, a warm sitz bath.  If it persists, than you may need to seek care from a gynecologist or nurse practitioner who specializes in women's health.

Good luck!

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Today it's a little red sometimes and hurts. I treated a yeast infection on Monday morning. Could it be a reaction to a monistat one day ovule? I'm worried but I don't wanna get inside my own head. My insurance sucks and I have little funds so any advice is helpful.

Hi Again, Jasmine,
It is probably NOT related to the use of Monistat. It may be due to the yeast itself. It may be due to a secondary infection.  That's why I suggested your trying moist heat or a sitz bath.  If no improvement, or if it worsens, than you will have to pursue health care.  Look for a place like Planned Parenthood clinic (which may be less expensive) if one is available.  

Good luck!

Sexually Transmitted Diseases

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Mark P. Behar


Almost any question or concern about gay men's health issues, sexually transmitted infections, abnormal Pap smears, anal cytology (anal "Pap smears"), etc. There is no such thing as “d/d free” or “clean” (free of infection), so why do so many of us deceive ourselves into thinking that some people are indeed totally free from a potentially infectious disease, like HIV, herpes, hepatitis, syphilis, chlamydia, warts, gonorrhea, etc., just because they say so? Clinical laboratory tests are not perfect, and having a “negative” or “nonreactive” test does not mean that a person is free from infection. Perhaps at the moment the test was taken, the person was uninfected; or, perhaps, the test wasn’t sensitive enough to detect presence of the infection. There is really no way that anyone can determine that they are truly “disease free,” and there are over a hundred of infectious conditions that can be spread without your knowing anything. Rather than trying to “pre-screen” or “serosort” a potential sex-mate with deceptive questions that are impossible to know by today’s technologies, a wiser option may be to consider everyone infected with something, and either use appropriate protective measures (“safer sex”), or accept the responsibility and consequences of possibly “catching” something from someone who’s hotter than expected (pun intended!). There is much research that supports the contention that an HIV positive person reliably taking HIV medications, and having an undetectable viral load, presents a lower risk for transmission of HIV than people who may think or say they are HIV negative, but are not. Food for thought!


Family Practice PA since 1981; Volunteer Clinician for Brady East STD (BESTD) Clinic, Milwaukee, since 1977; answered STD questions submitted to their web site. Professionally lectured at national and regional Physician Assistant and Nurse Practitioner conferences, and at national gay & lesbian health conferences on topics including HIV/AIDS, herpes, hepatitis, STDs, human papilloma virus (the cause of venereal warts), abnormal Pap smears, gay and lesbian health issues, among others.

Co-Founder, Lesbian, Bisexual, & Gay Physician Assistant Caucus of the American Academy of Physician Assistants, Inc.; American Academy of Physician Assistants; Wisconsin Academy of Physician Assistants; National Co-Chair (2012-16), National Association of Black and White Men Together: A Gay, Multiracial Organization for All People (NABWMT)

Journal of the American Academy of Physician Assistants (JAPA) Q Visions, Quarterly Newsletter of the NABWMT

Bachelor's of Arts, 1972 (University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI) Graduate Credits Experimental Psychology, 1972-75 (Tulane University, New Orleans, LA) Physician Assistant, Bachelor's of Science, 1981 (George Washington University, Washington, DC); Masters in Physician Assistant Studies, 2000 (University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, NE)

Awards and Honors
Colposcopy Recognition Award (CRA), the American Association of Colposcopy and Cervical Pathology; Distinguished Fellow, Clinical Preceptor, American Academy of Physician Assistants; Fellow, Wisconsin Academy of Physician Assistants

Past/Present Clients
Brady East STD Clinic, Milwaukee, WI Milwaukee Health Services, Inc. (Martin Luther King Heritage Health Center), Dept. of Family Medicine and Early Intervention Program for HIV Infected Persons

©2017 All rights reserved.