Health News of Wednesday, 25 April 2012
Like the hunt for the Holy Grail, the search for proof that the female "G-spot" actually exists has fascinated both men and women for ages. Some say the supposedly "erotic pleasure button" simply doesn't exist, while others insist it most certainly does and they know exactly how to find it.
Now, a new study claims that it has proven that the elusive structure does exist anatomically.
The discovery was made using a rather unlikely source: the cadaver of a deceased 83-year-old woman.
Dr. Adam Ostrzenski, of the Institute of Gynecology in St. Petersburg, Fla., conducted a layer-by-layer dissection of the woman's vaginal wall shortly after her death and discovered what he describes as a small, grape-like structure that appeared to be made of erectile tissue.
Ostrzenski explains in The Journal of Sexual Medicine that the G-spot is a distinct sac structure located deep in the tissue in the front wall of the vagina.
In the woman he studied, it lay at a 35-degree angle, about 1.6 cm up from the urethra. He said the sac was relatively small, only 8 millimetres in length, with a width of 3.6 mm tapering up to 1.5 mm.
"This study confirmed the anatomic existence of the G-spot, which may lead to a better understanding and improvement of female sexual function," Ostrzenski said in a statement.
Reports have existed for centuries of a secret spot that can lead to powerful vaginal orgasms and female ejaculation if stimulated correctly
But some have doubted whether the spot actually existed – including the millions of women who say they have never experienced vaginal orgasm.
Ostrzenski noted in his study that because the sac was buried deep in tissue, it is not easy to find, which may be why confirmation of its existence has been so elusive.
The term "G-Spot" was named after the German gynecologist Ernst Gräfenberg. He is more famous for developing the intrauterine device (IUD), than his research on sexual stimulation. But in 1981, a landmark study by Beverly Whipple and colleagues at Rutgers University led to the coinage of the term G-Spot.
Whipple has told a number of media outlets that she is skeptical about Ostrzenski's finding. She tells New Scientist that that plenty of research has shown that the G-spot is likely not a single structure at all, and that women's sexual pleasure doesn't come down to a single "magical" spot.
"I'm very happy that people are interested in this but I think there's a lot more to it than just one tissue," she told the publication. "We have never said that the G spot is a distinct structure."
Whipple also says Ostrzenski's study fails to prove that the structure he found even has nerve endings or that it plays any role at all in female sexual arousal. Nor has he proven that the sac he found is made, as he claims, of erectile tissue.
Whipple and two of her colleagues have already drafted a critique of the study that they hope to publish in a future issue of the Journal of Sexual Medicine.
Others are criticizing the study because it focused on only one cadaver. Some critics have even suggested that the structure Ostrzenski found could have simply been a sign of disease, especially given the age of the woman.
And still others are skeptical while noting that one of the services Ostrzenski offers in his Florida clinic is "G-Spot Augmentation," a form of plastic surgery on women's genitalia presumably meant to enhance sexual pleasure.
Irwin Goldstein, the editor-in-chief of The Journal of Sexual Medicine, stands by the publishing of the study.
"This case study in a single cadaver adds to the growing body of literature regarding women's sexual anatomy and physiology," he said in a statement.