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Imperforate Hymen: Care Instructions

Female reproductive system (front view)


The hymen is the thin tissue around the opening to the vagina. Usually the hymen has an opening. This lets menstrual blood pass through the vagina.

In rare cases, the hymen does not have an opening. This is called an imperforate hymen. Doctors often diagnose it around puberty, when symptoms of pain and pressure in the pelvic area may start to occur. This is caused by the backed-up menstrual blood.

To treat it, your doctor will make an opening in the hymen. This will let the blood drain.

Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse advice line (811 in most provinces and territories) if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.

How can you care for yourself at home?

  • Take an over-the-counter pain medicine, such as acetaminophen (Tylenol), ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), or naproxen (Aleve), if you have pain. Read and follow all instructions on the label.
  • Do not take two or more pain medicines at the same time unless the doctor told you to. Many pain medicines have acetaminophen, which is Tylenol. Too much acetaminophen (Tylenol) can be harmful.
  • Do not douche or try to use a tampon until your doctor says it is okay.

When should you call for help?

Call your doctor or nurse advice line now or seek immediate medical care if:

  • You have new or worse belly or pelvic pain.
  • You have new or increasing vaginal bleeding.

Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse advice line if:

  • You do not get better as expected.

Care instructions adapted under license by your healthcare professional. If you have questions about a medical condition or this instruction, always ask your healthcare professional. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information.