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Vulvovaginitis

Overview

Vulvovaginitis is an inflammation of the vagina most often caused by a bacterial, fungal, or parasitic infection. Vulvovaginitis causes vaginal discharge, irritation, and itching. A woman usually may have a vaginal discharge, the amount and consistency of which varies during the course of the menstrual cycle; however, Vulvovaginitis causes increased vaginal discharge. Vulvovaginitis is common and can affect women of all ages.


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Causes

There are various causes for Vulvovaginitis. It can be caused by bacteria, yeasts, viruses, and other parasites. Some sexually transmitted diseases can also be the reason, as can various chemicals found in bubble baths, soaps, and perfumes. Candida albicans, which stimulates yeast infections, is one of the most common causes. Another source of Vulvovaginitis is an overgrowth of certain types of bacteria in the vagina. Bacterial vaginosis may cause a thin, grey vaginal discharge and a fishy odor. A sexually transmitted disease called trichomonas vaginitis infection is another common reason. This infection leads to genital itching, a vaginal odor, and a heavy vaginal discharge, which may be yellow-grey or green in color. Llack of estrogen in postmenopausal women can result in vaginal dryness and thinning of vaginal skin, which may also lead to or worsen genital itching and burning.


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Signs & Symptoms

Many women have Vulvovaginitis without symptoms. Often, though, a woman may notice some of these symptoms:

  • Uncharacteristic vaginal bleeding
  • Uneasiness or burning during urination
  • Dryness or discomfort during sexual intercourse
  • After intercourse a foul or fishy vaginal odour
  • Irritation and itching inside and outside the vagina
  • Swelling or redness of the genital area
  • Lumpy, frothy, or discoloured Vaginal discharge 
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Prevention

Vulvovaginitis cannot always be prevented. Following these recommendations can lower a woman's risk for Vulvovaginitis.

Avoid douches and other chemicals in the vaginal area.
Consider hormone replacement therapy after menopause.
Control blood glucose, if she has diabetes.
Practice safer sex.
Wear loose-fitting, absorbent underwear.
Wipe front to back after using the toilet.


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Treatments
Antibiotic Modern Medicine

reatment selection depends upon the cause of vaginitis. Therapy may include the following:

  • Antibiotic medicines, such as ceftriaxone or clindamycin
  • Antibiotic vaginal tablets or creams, such as metronidazole or triple sulfa
  • Antifungal medicines, such as fluconazole
  • Antifungal vaginal creams or tablets, such as miconazole or clotrimazole
  • Hormone replacement therapy
  • Sits baths, which involve sitting in a few inches of warm water
  • Soothing vaginal creams or ointments
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