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ERIC Number: EJ827064
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Feb
Pages: 11
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 26
ISSN: ISSN-0022-006X
Therapist-Aided Exposure for Women with Lifelong Vaginismus: A Replicated Single-Case Design
ter Kuile, Moniek M.; Bulte, Isis; Weijenborg, Philomeen T. M.; Beekman, Aart; Melles, Reinhilde; Onghena, Patrick
Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, v77 n1 p149-159 Feb 2009
Vaginismus is commonly described as a persistent difficulty in allowing vaginal entry of a penis or other object. Lifelong vaginismus occurs when a woman has never been able to have intercourse. A replicated single-case A-B-phase design was used to investigate the effectiveness of therapist-aided exposure for lifelong vaginismus. A baseline period (Phase A) was contrasted with exposure + follow-up (Phase B), using random switching between phases. The main outcome measure (intercourse ability) was assessed daily for 24 weeks. Ten women participated. The exposure consisted of a maximum of three 2-hr sessions during 1 week at a university hospital. The participant performed vaginal penetration exercises on herself, in the presence of a female therapist. Two follow-up sessions were scheduled over a 5-week period. Nine of the 10 participants reported having intercourse after treatment, and in 5 of the 9, intercourse was possible within the 1st week of treatment. The results remained at 1-year follow-up. Furthermore, exposure was successful in decreasing fear and negative penetration beliefs posttreatment and at 3-month and 1-year follow-ups. Therapist-aided exposure appears to be an effective treatment for lifelong vaginismus. (Contains 4 tables, 2 figures and 1 footnote.)
American Psychological Association. Journals Department, 750 First Street NE, Washington, DC 20002-4242. Tel: 800-374-2721; Tel: 202-336-5510; Fax: 202-336-5502; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A