Aunt Vadge: little pimple below my urethra

Dear Aunt Vadge, 

Okay so a few days ago I started to notice how it hurt when I wiped after using the bathroom, so yesterday I decided to get a mirror and check it out, and I saw what looks similar to a pimple that was barely below and to the left of my urethra.

It looked almost as if it had fused part of my vaginal opening to the skin around it. It’s very small, like I said it’s pimple-sized, and there appears to be pus in it, but it’s hard to tell. I’m not sure if I accidentally cut myself and it’s infected, or what’s going on.

The last time I had sex was in December 2015, but I have masturbated once or twice since. I’m really concerned because it hurts when I touch it, and when I wipe. My discharge doesn’t seem too irregular, I thought maybe I have a yeast infection. I really have no idea.

It is mostly round, and has what appears to be a small hole (kind of a divot) in the center of it. Like I said it’s yellow, all of it, and it’s not flush with the surface of my vagina. I’m really concerned that it’s something bad, but I’m trying not to freak myself out. I haven’t tried anything to heal it because I’m very unsure as to what it is. If you could suggest what it is or anything to fix it, it would be much appreciated. 

Freaking Out
USA, Age 17

Dear Freaking Out,

Thanks for your email. A diagram would be great to pinpoint the exact location, but it sounds as if you possibly have an infected Skene’s duct – they are the tiny little glands that exit your body from right next to your urethra on either side, and sometimes they get blocked and some build-up occurs, and they can become infected.

See the diagrams on our Skene’s gland (female prostate) article and see if this seems about the right position. If this doesn’t clear up by itself, you will need to go and have it cleared out by a doctor. It isn’t dangerous, but it could be quite uncomfortable, and if it isn’t treated, you could end up with a cyst or abscess, or just an ongoing uncomfortable infection.

If the problem doesn’t clear up by itself in the next couple of days, you’ll need to go and get examined, because you could have a more serious issue going on such as a skin condition/autoimmune condition that affects your labial skin and can actually fuse your labia.

Don’t panic yet though!

You can’t panic until you have something to panic about, so to solve this once and for all, go and see your doctor or make a visit to a sexual health clinic – they look at vaginas all day long, and they have seen it all. What you describe seems a bit out of the ordinary and is not in the realms of something you can treat yourself at home without knowing exactly what it is.

Weird can pop up and disappear, and sometimes we never know what they are. If they stick around or are painful or seem to be infected, you need to have it looked at by someone who knows what they’re doing.

Write again anytime, particularly if you get a diagnosis and want more help.

Warmest regards,
Aunt Vadge