Our Health Topics

Vertical/Complete Vaginal Septum

  • Overview

    If your daughter has a vertical or complete vaginal septum, she has a wall of tissue running down the length of the vaginal canal, partitioning the space into two vaginas.

    • Your daughter may realize she has duplicate vaginas when she inserts a tampon during her period and blood still leaks from her vagina. She may try two tampons and find that one vagina is too narrow to fit it in.
    • Some women have no symptoms of a vertical or complete vaginal septum. During sexual activity, the septum may tear and create one vagina. She may find that her partner's penis will always fall to one side or the other since one side of the vagina may be larger.
    • A vertical septum may not need to be removed unless it causes pain during sexual activity.
    • Women born with a vertical or complete vaginal septum also have duplications in the upper reproductive tract, meaning that she will have two cervices and two uteri.

    How Boston Children's Hospital approaches vertical or complete vaginal septum

    At Children's Center for Congenital Anomalies of the Reproductive Tract, an interdisciplinary team of pediatricians, gynecologists, urogynecologists and colorectal surgeons will work to find the best treatment for your daughter's vertical or complete vaginal septum.

    Boston Children's Hospital 
    300 Longwood Ave.
    Boston MA 02115
     fax: 617-730-0186
  • In-Depth

    What are the symptoms of vertical or complete vaginal septum?

    Common symptoms include:

    • pain upon inserting a tampon
    • menstrual blood leaks out even with a tampon inserted

    What causes vertical or complete vaginal septum?

    • A vertical or complete vaginal septum forms during embryological development when the tubes that eventually become a vagina don't fuse together properly.
    • The cause of this genetic abnormality is unknown.

    How will vertical or complete vaginal septum affect my daughter's sex life and fertility?

    • Having a vertical or complete vaginal septum may not affect her sexual life at all. However, some women with a vertical septum experience pain during sex.
    • Women with a vertical septum can have a normal reproductive life. But because there are two uteri and two cervices, there is a higher risk for premature delivery or breech presentation (when the baby's feet come out first), which usually requires a Caesarean section.
    • Women with two cervices need a Pap smear from both the left and right cervix.
  • Tests

    How does a doctor know that my daughter has vertical or complete vaginal septum?

    During an examination, your daughter's gynecologist can confirm that a wall of fibrous tissue is partitioning the vagina into two canals.

  • Vertical or complete vaginal septum treatment at Boston Children's Hospital

    The Center for Congenital Anomalies of the Reproductive Tract offers a surgical procedure to "resect," or remove, the fibrous tissue dividing your daughter's vagina.

    The surgery needs to remove the entire septum. If all the tissue isn't removed, there could be a band of tissue running along the top and bottom of the vagina, and this may make sex uncomfortable. This is why the gynecologist at Children's will remove the entire septum and bring the two sides of the vagina together to create a normal vaginal texture.

Request an Appointment

If this is a medical emergency, please dial 9-1-1. This form should not be used in an emergency.

Patient Information
Date of Birth:
Contact Information
Appointment Details
Send RequestIf you do not see the specialty you are looking for, please call us at: 617-355-6000.International visitors should call International Health Services at +1-617-355-5209.
Please complete all required fieldsThis department is currently not accepting appointment requests onlineThis department is currently not accepting appointment requests online

Thank you.

Your request has been successfully submitted

You will be contacted within 1 business day.

If you have questions or would like more information, please call:

617-355-6000 +1-617-355-6000
Find a Doctor
Search by Clinician's Last Name or Specialty:
Select by Location:
Search by First Letter of Clinician's Last Name: *ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ
More optionsSearch
Condition & Treatments
Search for a Condition or Treatment:
View allSearch
Visitor Information
The future of pediatrics will be forged by thinking differently, breaking paradigms and joining together in a shared vision of tackling the toughest challenges before us.”
- Sandra L. Fenwick, President and CEO