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Vaginitis

Vaginitis is a term used to define inflammation, itching, burning, or infection of the vagina. Vaginitis is often caused by bacteria, yeasts, protozoa, and viruses, and even by irritants like soaps, lubricants, and powders.

What is vaginitis?

Vaginitis is a term that is used for a spectrum of conditions that causes vaginal or vulvar symptoms like vaginal discharge with odor, irritation, and burning.
Vulvovaginal complaints are common reasons for women to seek professional medical care.

Etiology and Diagnosis

Some infectious causes of vaginitis are vulvovaginal candidiasis (yeast), trichomoniasis, and bacterial vaginosis. Vaginitis can be caused by the frequent use of condoms, female hygiene products like vaginal deodorants, powders, soaps, detergents, and fabric softeners. Sometimes underwear made out of heat-retaining fabric like nylon can also lead to vaginitis.

Diagnostic tests

Bacterial vaginosis can be detected by the presence of three of four Amsel criteria, which involves:

  • Vaginal pH > 4.5
  • Thin and homogenous vaginal discharge
  • Positive whiff test
  • Clue cells on microscopic examination

In regular practice, though, bacterial vaginosis is frequently diagnosed by sending a sample of vaginal fluid to a lab.

Treatment

The treatment of vaginitis depends on the causative agent.

Trichomoniasis

In the case of trichomoniasis, metronidazole given twice daily for seven days will cure both bacterial vaginosis and trichomoniasis. Metronidazole is effective in most cases but may leave a metallic tase in the mouth and should not be combined with alcohol.

Vulvovaginal Candidiasis

For patients with vulvovaginal candidiasis either prescribed oral medications or over the counter vaginal suppositories provide effective treatment.

Bacterial Vaginosis

For patients with bacterial vaginosis, metronidazole is taken twice daily for one week to alleviate symptoms. Metronidazole gel or clindamycin cream may be applied intravaginally before going to bed.
Further treatment should depend on the condition of the patient and the severity of the symptoms after following the prescribed regimen for one week.

Clindamycin cream is also considered for patients with intolerance or allergy to metronidazole.

Contact us

In case of urgent medical care assistance, AfterOurs Urgent Care offers immediate telemedicine services, where medical providers are available to offer assistance. Anyone who experiences signs and symptoms requiring urgent medical attention can simply book their appointment with AfterOurs Urgent Care to directly talk to an expert. If your medical issue is not appropriate for telemedicine, we will let you know and refer you to an in-person facility.

When to visit a doctor:
If you experience an itching or burning sensation in the vaginal region, you should see a medical provider in order to avoid possible serious complications.

Treatment regarding vaginitis is available at AfterOurs Urgent Care.