THE G-spot is in the news again, and yet again it is proving elusive, with a team of scientists from Istanbul concluding that evidence for it existing is "scant, insufficient and weak".
The mysterious erogenous zone was identified in the 1940s by the gynaecologist Ernst Grafenberg (hence the G) who, rumour has it, used his wife's friends as "guinea pigs" for his research. In 1981 the American researchers Dr Frank Addiego and Beverly Whipple published a paper in thedescribing the case of a woman who had learnt that stimulation of an erotically sensitive area on her anterior vaginal wall led to the expulsion of a type of prostatic fluid. The pair went on to write an international bestseller, and the G-spot was suddenly a household word.
The idea that there was a secret anatomical sex button hiding within the female body sent millions under the covers on a mission to find it, but it was a largely fruitless expedition. Some women reported having deeper orgasms when they were stimulated internally, but most women felt nothing. The hype about the G-spot did women a huge disservice because it helped to perpetuate penetrative orgasm as some kind of sexual holy grail. It is now widely accepted that most women do not orgasm without clitoral stimulation, but in the 1980s nobody was being honest about sex.
In fact, many women of my generation grew up thinking that there was something wrong with them because zero foreplay and 10 minutes of thrusting couldn't bring them to orgasm.
Several studies have dismissed the G-spot as a "gynaecological UFO". Thank goodness. It does not exist, in my opinion, but it continues to make headlines. In 2012 the gynaecologist Adam Ostrzenski raised interest in it again when he published a paper in theclaiming to have found it. Not everyone was convinced. The Australian urologist Helen O'Connell, famed for "discovering" the full extent of the clitoris, responded by dissecting the vaginas of 13 women who had died aged between 32 and 97. She found nothing.
O'Connell's research does, however, explain why some women find that stimulation of the anterior wall increases pleasure. Her original studies of the clitoris revealed that the visible part is the tip of the iceberg.
Yet studies of the non-existent G-spot continue. The most recent - from Serdar Aydin at Bezmialem Vakif University in Istanbul - confirms, yet again, that it is the sexual equivalent of a unicorn.
On the other hand, the clitoris, which measures just 3.4mm in diameter and 5.1mm in length, contains more nerve endings than the head of the penis. So forget G-spots. Let's focus on the C-spot and close the orgasm gap once and for all.