Characterization of Vulvar Skin of Healthy Thai Women: Influence of Sites, Age and Menopause
Tsutomu Fujimura, Noriko Sato, Suwirakorn Ophaswongse, Yutaka Takagi, Mitsuyuki Hotta, Takashi Kitahara, Yoshinori Takema, Piti Palungwachira
Although the physiological characteristics of vulvar skin have been characterized in Caucasians, little is known about the vulvar skin of Asian women. This study assessed the moisture content, transepidermal water loss (TEWL) and pH of vulvar skin of 99 healthy Asian women residing in Bangkok, aged 20–69 years, during their non-menstrual period, including 39 post-menopausal women. Skin pH was acidic at all sites, and the pH of the vulvar areas was significantly higher than the control sites (inner thigh, inner forearm). Skin moisture was slightly, but significantly, lower around the vulvar area and the thigh than around the forearm. TEWL was significantly higher in vulvar areas than control sites. Ageing and menopause did not cause notable alterations in most properties of vulvar skin. In conclusion, the vulvar skin of Asian women has similar properties to that of Caucasians.