Desquamative inflammatory vaginitis is an uncommon cause of an intractable vaginitis often accompanied by serious dyspareunia, which can occur at any stage of reproductive life and after the menopause. The cytological changes are identical with those seen in atrophic vaginitis yet the disorder often occurs in the presence of apparently normal ovarian function. Vaginal synechiae and stenosis develop in an appreciable number of patients. Treatment is unsatisfactory though there is some response to either local or systemic steroid therapy. The literature is reviewed and the association of some cases with lichen planus of the mouth and genitals discussed. Its causation and natural history remain largely unknown and there is as yet, insufficient evidence to regard it as a single entity. It is likely that the incidence of the disorder is underestimated.
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