Fast facts about bacterial vaginitis
- Bacterial (BV) is the most common vaginal infection among women aged 15 to 44 years.
- Symptoms, if they appear, may include itching and a gray, watery discharge with a “fishy” smell.
- Untreated BV can lead to serious complications.
- Treatment is normally with .
- Some home remedies are suggested, but anyone with symptoms should see a doctor.
- be watery and thin
- be gray or white in color
- have a strong and unpleasant smell, often described as fishy
- a burning sensation during urination
- itching around the outside of the vagina
- infection, as BV increases susceptibility to the virus
- STIs, such as the simplex virus, , , and human papilloma virus ( )
- post-surgical infection, for example, after a termination or a hysterectomy
- early, or preterm, delivery
- loss of pregnancy
- the amniotic sac breaking open too early
- postpartum endometritis, an irritation or of the lining of the uterus after delivery
- tubal factor , caused by damage to the fallopian tubes, which connect the ovaries to the uterus
- chorioamnionitis, an inflammation of the membranes surrounding the fetus, known as the chorion and the amnion
The role of bacteria
- douching, or using water or a medicated solution to clean the vagina
- having a bath with antiseptic liquids
- having a new sex partner
- having multiple sex partners
- using perfumed bubble baths, vaginal deodorants, and some scented soaps
- washing underwear with strong detergents
- Tablets: Taken orally, twice daily for 7 days. It is seen as the most effective treatment, and the preferred treatment if the woman is breastfeeding or pregnant.
- A single tablet: Taken orally as a one-time dose. BV is more likely to return with this treatment, compared with the 7-day tablet course.
- Gel: Applied to the vagina once daily, for 5 days.
- symptoms persist
- symptoms go away but come back
- the patient is pregnant
“Although the results of different studies are controversial, most studies have been in favor of the probiotics in the prevention or treatment of BV, and no adverse effects have been reported. Therefore, it may be helpful to recommend daily consumption of probiotic products to improve public health among women.”