The vaginal vein refers to the group of blood vessels located near the genitalia on the female human body. They are part of a network of blood vessels known as the vaginal venous plexus.
The vaginal vein's physiologic function is dependent on the plexus. Both originate from the sides of the vagina. The purpose of the vaginal vein and plexus is to direct blood flow away from the vagina and toward the heart. They facilitate proper drainage of blood from the vagina.
The blood vessels work in conjunction with the venous plexuses located in the uterus, bladder, and rectum of the female body.
There are a total of two vaginal veins. Each vein is located on either side of the vagina. Once the blood flows into the vaginal vein, it is then directed toward the internal iliac vein in the pelvis. The vaginal vein also delivers blood flow to the uterine vein in the uterus.
Thrombosis, the medical condition in which a blood clot develops inside the blood vessel, can occur in the vaginal vein, and lead to critical hemorrhaging, or bleeding.