Looking back at Ava Cadell's upbringing, few could have guessed that one day she would become a professional sex expert.
Cadell was raised by nuns. "They tried to instill shame and guilt about my body and sexuality," Cadell said. "But when something is taboo it only makes you want to explore it more."
And explore she has. Cadell founded Loveology University, a website that bills itself as "the Online College of Sensual Knowledge," offering courses on how to have better sex. One such course offers the "latest techniques on how to find and really drive women crazy with G-spot stimulation."
But not everyone thinks the G-spot is so easy to find. For some, the search for that vortex of pleasure has been more of a crusade. For others it's a source of great frustration.
And in recent years, the search has expanded beyond the bedroom and into the medical laboratory.
In a new study to be published Wednesday in The Journal of Sexual Medicine, a researcher claims to have conclusively located the elusive G-spot.
But the new report is unlikely to put an end to any controversy. Already, several experts warn this so-called discovery may not be the road map to female orgasm that many women -- and their partners -- have long hoped to find.
The G-spot got its name in the 1980s when the concept -- an erogenous zone that, when stimulated, can lead to powerful orgasm, gained in popularity. It was initially named after Ernst Gräfenberg, a German physician, who wrote about its existence in the 1950s.
Since then, most sex experts have scrutinized an area on the front wall of the vagina that, anecdotally, appears particularly sensitive. Some experts, like Cadell, say stimulating this area can lead to female arousal, orgasm, and even ejaculation. Yet, despite widespread popular belief in its existence, no one has ever decisively identified a particular body part corresponding to the G-spot.
But now Dr. Adam Ostrzenski, a gynecologic surgeon and director of The Institute of Gynecology, Inc., in St. Petersburg, Fla., says he has accomplished this feat by discovering a structure he believes represents the G-spot.
Ostrzenski says he was motivated to study the G-spot after hearing anecdotes of swelling in the lower section of the vagina during stimulation.
"If something is causing engorgement or swelling, then anatomy must be present," he explained.
The unsexy twist to Ostrzenski's otherwise sexy research is the method he employed in his search; he dissected the cadaver of an 83-year-old woman and discovered a blue, grape-like structure buried deep in the front wall of the vagina.
According to the doctor, this structure resembled erectile tissue, similar to what can be found in the male penis.
Ostrzenski, a long-time believer in the existence of the G-spot, may have an additional incentive to validate its existence; he specializes in a procedure known as G-spot augmentation, in which a patient's own fat is injected into the vaginal wall right underneath the area where the G-spot is supposed to reside in order to enhance stimulation.
He says the location of this special spot has long been known by many women, and that it can be taught to others.
"The majority of women, when instructed where to look for the G-spot, will find it," Ostrzenski says.
Cadell says Ostrzenski's finding is proof of something she has known all along. "It's there for every woman to explore; it's a treasure."