Most women believe in the existence of the G-spot, a female erogenous zone thought to be located in the anterior wall of the vagina. The question as to whether this zone actually exists as a distinct anatomical entity remains controversial, however. Is there a female G-spot or has the media, combined with anecdotal evidence, convinced both women and men alike of the existence of a fictitious erogenous zone?
Dr. Amichai Kilchevsky and his team of researchers investigated this controversial issue in an article recently published in the International Journal of Sexual Medicine.
By performing a review of studies published between 1950 and 2011, Dr. Kilchevsky’s team conclude that, despite anecdotal evidence to the contrary, there does not appear to be an anatomical entity in the anterior vaginal wall that can explain past reports about the G-spot’s existence.
They are quick to temper this statement, however, by stating that the vast number of reliable reports and testimonials given by women and their partners do seem to point to the G-spot’s existence. It is possible that the methods that have been used to investigate this question up until now have been inadequate.
The Female G-spot was first described in 1950 by Ernst Gräfenberg, a German gynecologist, although there does appear to be a few references to such a zone in ancient Indian texts. For this reason, Dr. Kilchevsky limited his search to articles written after 1950.
The researchers searched the PubMed database using keywords like “G-spot”, “female orgasm”, “vaginal innervation”, and “female erogenous zones” for studies that had looked into the question. They found 181 articles and limited them to those that were peer-reviewed and written in English. The final number of articles used in this literature review is 96.
Surveys, pathological reports, medical imaging and biochemical markers have all been used to determine whether or not the G-Spot exists. In 1950, Gräfenberg described an area where women derived pleasure, located on the front wall of the vagina, close to the bladder, and measuring about 1-2 cm in size, but he based his studies mostly on anecdotal evidence. Many other studies have gone on to use similar techniques combined with mechanical stimulation as well as questionnaires, to reach the same conclusion as Gräfenberg.
Anatomical studies have not been as successful. Skene’s glands and periurethral tissue remain the only structures that have been identified on the vaginal wall. Skene’s glands are responsible for the secretion of fluid during sexual stimulation and, according to studies published in 2007 and 2010, are responsible for female ejaculation, the secretion of copious amounts of fluid during and following an orgasm. All studies that looked into the possibility that the Skene’s glands might actually form the G-spot have rejected it as such. Instead, Skene’s glands correspond to the prostate glands in prepubescent boys, and they do not have touch receptors. It is interesting to note, however, that in a 1990 study, 82% of the women who claimed to have a G-spot also experienced ejaculation during orgasms (Alzate, 1990).
Periurethral tissue, on the other hand, is a more likely candidate for the location of the G-spot. This type of tissue makes up the vestibular bulb and the clitoral corpora cavernosa. It is possible that by putting pressure on the periurethral tissue, one might be indirectly stimulating the clitoris and the dorsal clitoral nerve. This is further supported by a study by Buisson et al. (2008), which demonstrated that clitoral bodies descend towards the anterior vaginal wall during sex because of levator ani muscles contraction.
Gravina et al. (2008), used ultrasonic measurement and identified a difference in thickness of the urethrovaginal space in 20 females. The thickness of this area seemed to be thicker in women who reported having vaginal orgasms than in woman who only had clitoral ones. Unfortunately, the researchers were not able to demonstrate that the thickness of the vaginal wall was linked to sexual pleasure. It is possible that the difference in thickness is simply an effect of stronger vaginal contractions in the women who experience vaginal orgasms, the sexual equivalent of lifting weights.
Certain histological studies have determined that the anterior wall, the suspected location of the G-spot, is more heavily innervated than the posterior wall. In addition, these studies claim that the closer you get to the vagina’s entrance, the more innervated the anterior wall gets. Many oppose these claims, however. Pauls et al. (2006) inspected the vaginal walls of 21 females and found that there was no significant difference in vaginal wall innervation throughout the vagina.
This review was unable to support to provide support for he existence of the female erogenous zone known as the G-spot. The variability of female genitalia might be the reason for this failure. It is also possible that the G-spot simply does not exist.
In any case, this question should be answered, not only important because it might allow women to improve their sexual pleasure, but also because there is a multimillion dollar industry that relies on the G-spot “myth” in order to maintain and increase its profit. For example, if there is no G-spot, than “G-spot augmentation” surgeries (also called G-Spot amplification), a growing fad involving injecting collagen into the anterior wall of the vagina, should be banned on the spot (no pun intended).
The researchers end the paper by stating that the question as to whether or not the G-spot exists is much less interesting or revealing than the public’s desire for proof of its existence, a statement with which I can finally wholeheartedly agree!
Kilchevsky, A., Vardi, Y., Lowenstein, L., & Gruenwald, I. (2012). Is the Female G-Spot Truly a Distinct Anatomic Entity? The Journal of Sexual Medicine DOI: 10.1111/j.1743-6109.2011.02623.x
Alzate H. (1990) Vaginal erogeneity, “female ejaculation,” and the “Grafenberg spot”.Archives of sexual behavior, 19(6), 607-11. PMID: 2082864
Gravina GL, Brandetti F, Martini P, Carosa E, Di Stasi SM, Morano S, Lenzi A, & Jannini EA. (2008) Measurement of the thickness of the urethrovaginal space in women with or without vaginal orgasm. The journal of sexual medicine, 5(3), 610-8. PMID: 18221286
Pauls R, Mutema G, Segal J, Silva WA, Kleeman S, Dryfhout Ma V, & Karram M. (2006) A prospective study examining the anatomic distribution of nerve density in the human vagina. The journal of sexual medicine, 3(6), 979-87. PMID: 17100930