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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Bodies » what is labia minora?

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Author Topic: what is labia minora?
nanni
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why is the inside of the vagina considered to be mucous membrane but the labia minora are not, and are instead considered to be skin folds?
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orca
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Hey nanni, welcome to Scarleteen. We actually have a really great article called Pink Parts - Female Sexual Anatomy that should cover all of this. If after reading that article you still have questions, feel free to come back and ask them.

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Listen, strange women lyin' in ponds distributin' swords is no basis for a system of government. Supreme executive power derives from a mandate from the masses, not from some farcical aquatic ceremony.--Monty Python and the Holy Grail

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nanni
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Hi, i still could not get the answer to it. I read the page, bt it was too general. so again, do you knwo why the inside of the vagina considered to be mucous membrane but the labia minora are not, and are instead considered to be skin folds?
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KittenGoddess
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My understanding (and maybe one of our volunteers who is more involved specifically in the medical community can clarify this or be a bit more specific as well), in the most basic sense, is that mucous membranes (while they are not all exactly the same in makeup) do both absorption and secretion. Labia don't actually secrete mucous (though they may have fluid on them that is secreted by other glands and mucous membranes), but the vaginal canal does.

[ 05-22-2008, 09:34 PM: Message edited by: KittenGoddess ]

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Sarah Liz

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nanni
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KittenGoddess
, oh, so that's why the labia minora are considered to be skin folds, and are NOT mucous membranes, correct? b/c they don't secrete mucous, and are on the outside of the body, they're considered to be skin too, unlike the vagina, which is the inside, crroect?

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nanni
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Anyone else also know, just for knowledge and clarification?
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Leabug
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I'm not medically trained or anything, but so far as I know, KittenGoddess has got it right. Not all mucous membranes secrete mucous, though. Mucous membranes also are made of different layers and kinds of tissue than skin is.

While Wikipedia certainly isn't medical literature, they do have a pretty clear little explanation on what the mucosae are: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mucous_membrane

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Lea

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nanni
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Leabug, so u mean the labia minora are not mucous membranes, but are skin folds instead?
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Leabug
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They are skin folds, yes. They're different types of tissue than that of the vagina, which is mucous membrane.

May I ask why you're so concerned about whether the labia minora are mucous membranes or skin? Are you concerned about something in particular related to this? Perhaps we can reassure you more if we know what's going on. [Smile]

[ 05-23-2008, 08:26 PM: Message edited by: Leabug ]

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Lea

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nanni
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hi, i cut myself while washing, then noticed a hug pimple two days later. is that bad?

are u angry at me for asking?

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Leabug
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Nobody's mad, don't you worry! [Smile] I was just wondering why you were so concerned about it.

If you cut your labia a bit, the cut may have been a little infected if it began to swell and create pus. However, it is possible to get pimples on the genitals too, and we can't diagnose stuff over the internet, so if you're worried, your best bet is to get it checked out by a medical professional.

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Lea

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nanni
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ok i think shoiwng it to the OB GYN is ok, but i come from a culture where this kind of stuff is taboo, so are there any confidential places to go to? i'm over 18. Also, how did u also knwo the labia minora are skin folds and not mucpous membrane? I ask cuz most anatomy teachers don't go over it much.
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Leabug
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Doctors are always required to keep your visits (and what you talk about during them) confidential- it's the law. So if you have a GYN already, you can trust them to keep things confidential. If you need help finding a gyn, let us know what area of NY you're in, and we can look up some resources for you like Planned Parenthood locations.

I know that the labia minora are skin folds from doing research- the same way that KittenGoddess knows, and the same way that anyone else here knows. I've never taken an anatomy course, but I can always look up information myself from reliable sources both online and in "real life", such as medical books and journals. There's nothing stopping you from doing this too if you have questions that teachers don't answer. [Smile]

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Lea

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