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I stopped asking doctors for help

BMJ 1997; 315 doi: (Published 04 October 1997) Cite this as: BMJ 1997;315:890
  1. Isobel Nunneley
  1. lives in Bedfordshire

    “There's plenty of room in there; men come in all shapes and sizes,” was a consultant gynaecologist's response to my reporting superficial dyspareunia.

    During the 1960s and 1970s I sought help for what I now know to be the conditions lichen sclerosis and lichen planus. At best, my symptoms were attributed to a low grade monilial infection. More commonly, I was told that my sex life must be inadequate in some way. Since neither diagnosis was based on empirical evidence and I was tiring of the suggestion that I was imagining it, I stopped asking doctors for help. For about two years I used large amounts of the ointment prescribed …

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