Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Vulvar Malignancy Underlying Cause

The cause for vulvar cancer is unknown, but genetics may play a role in determining risk. Human papillomavirus infection, which causes genital warts, may also play a role.

Genes control the functions inside a cell. Special genes control how cells divide and grow. Cancer occurs when the damaged genes stimulate the cell to multiply out of control. The exact cause for this damage is unknown.


  • DNA
  • Genes on chromosomes
  • Cancer cells
  • Cancer cell division

Cancer cells can develop from any of the cells that line the vagina. The cells can spread through the lymphatic system or the bloodstream.


Continue to Vulvar Malignancy Types

Last Updated: Jul 15, 2009 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Vulvar Malignancy References
  1. de Hullu JA, Oonk MH, van der Zee AG. Modern management of vulvar cancer. Curr Opin Obstet Gynecol. 2004 Feb;16(1):65-72. [15128010]
  2. Montana GS. Carcinoma of the vulva: combined modality treatment. Curr Treat Options Oncol. 2004 Apr;5(2):85-95. [14990203]
  3. Tyring SK. Vulvar squamous cell carcinoma: guidelines for early diagnosis and treatment. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2003 Sep;189(3 Suppl):S17-23. [14532899]
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