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Also known as: Abnormal hymen
The hymen is thin half moon membrane of tissue that commonly partially covers the opening of a girl’s vagina. When the hymen has an extra band of tissue that runs down its middle and creates two openings into the vagina, it is known as a septate hymen.
A septate hymen develops as the fetus is growing in the womb (a congenital disorder) before birth. It’s not entirely clear why this occurs.
There are usually no symptoms until puberty when a girl may experience difficulty inserting or removing a tampon, and/or pain and/or bleeding when the hymen tears (usually during sexual intercourse).
Often no treatment is required as the hymen may be torn with insertion of a tampon or with sexual intercourse. A minor surgical procedure can be used to remove the extra tissue if needed.
Reviewed by: Jack Wolfsdorf, MD, FAAP
This page was last updated on: February 03, 2021 02:43 PM