How Does Vaginal Septum Affect Women? Everything You Need To Know

Written by - Reviewed by Consumer Health Digest Team

Published: Jan 29, 2014 | Last Updated: May 31, 2018

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What Is Vaginal Septum?

Vaginal septum is when a woman’s uterus and vagina does not develop properly, creating a large wall of tissue within the vagina. This wall of tissue can make it hard or impossible for menstrual blood to flow out, and can make sexual intercourse painful for the woman. There are a few different types of vaginal septum, each with their own trademarks.

What are The Different Types Of Vaginal Septum?

There are two different types of vaginal septum, each producing their own issues and each varying in severity and complication. The two types are transverse vaginal septum and longitudinal vaginal septum, each which are explained below.

  • Transverse Vaginal Septum: This is when the uteral-genital sinus and mullerian ducts inside the vagina do not develop properly. This creates a wall of tissue within the vagina, even though the outer genitalia may appear completely normal. A complete transverse vaginal septum is where the wall of tissue will block the entire length of the vagina, blocking menstrual fluid and other things from entering or leaving the vagina.
  • Longitudinal Vaginal Septum: This is when the wall of tissue creates two separate vaginal cavities. Women with this may not even notice they have such an issue until they try inserting a tampon and blood still ends up leaking. Sexual intercourse is possible with this, though one cavity may be favored towards the other.

    Women with this condition may also have two sets of reproductive tracts, meaning she has two uterus’s and such. This disorder does not have to be treated, if the woman chooses not to do so.

What Causes Vaginal Septum?

Vaginal septum is caused when the reproductive tract of the woman does not develop normally in utero. This can be caused by genetics, a mutation and other such things while her mother is pregnant. Only a small percentage of women suffer from this disorder, and more research still needs to be done before definitive causes are found.

What are The Symptoms Of Vaginal Septum?

Many women have no symptoms at all of vaginal septum. However, depending on which one you suffer from, symptoms may present themselves after a woman has begun menstruating. For transverse vaginal septum, the symptoms may be anything from lack of menstrual blood, pain, pain during intercourse and so forth.

For longitudinal vaginal symptoms, symptoms may be blood after tampon was inserted, pain, and so on. Many women with the latter only discover the disorder later in life, or after attempting to use a tampon.

What are The Diagnosis And Tests Involved In Vaginal Septum?

Vaginal Septum

After a woman notices there is something wrong down there, she may seek help of a professional. The professional will then do a gynecological exam, and an MRI if needed. Depending which vaginal septum disorder the woman has, will determine which method of testing and diagnoses is performed. Personal questions may also be asked, to help verify and clarify the diagnoses.

How It Affects Sexual Life In Women?

Having vaginal septum can affect a woman’s sex life in a few ways. Depending on which disorder she has, a woman may find sex painful to partake in. She may also find it hard to use tampons, and may also experience pain. Transverse septum is more serious than the latter, and should be treated as soon as it’s discovered.

Transverse septum can produce many issues for a woman’s sexual organs, some being devastating. For longitudinal vaginal septum, a woman may have sexual pain, though it’s less likely. She may also notice that one cavity feels different than the other. Her partner may also have troubles with penetration if one of the cavities is too small.


Vaginal septum can be rather serious if gone untreated, depending on which kind is diagnosed. However, the disorder is treatable, usually with surgery. Women with vaginal septum may struggle to have normal sex lives, and may experience pain. However, not both forms need to be treated, and the one which does, can be treated with surgery. There is hope for women with vaginal septum. However, the disorder is very rare currently and is hardly something to worry about.

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