Bacterial vaginosis develops due to an overgrowth of bacteria present in the vagina of the patient. Though not dangerous, bacterial vaginosis may lead to vaginal discharge and discomfort in women suffering from this condition.
The imbalance caused in the various species of bacteria in the vagina leads to a foul odor along with certain other symptoms which may prove to be disturbing in the long run. Found in women who are capable of bearing children, bacterial vaginosis is generally asymptomatic and its late diagnosis can lead to several other complications as well.
Symptoms, Causes, Diagnosis and Treatment of Bacterial Vaginosis
Symptoms of Bacterial Vaginosis
Apart from its regular symptoms like vaginal discharge and foul odor, women complaining of excessive discharge may be suffering from other serious conditions affecting the vagina, which include gonorrhea and Chlamydia and should consult a medical expert immediately.
The symptoms of bacterial vaginosis are quite similar to the ones present in patients suffering from yeast infections and trichomoniasis, which makes it difficult for patients to conduct a self-diagnosis of the disease. The symptoms of certain sexually transmitted diseases are also present in these patients making the presence of bacterial vaginosis all the more complicated. Some women suffering from bacterial vaginosis may also complain after a thinnish discharge after indulging in sexual intercourse.
Causes of Bacterial Vaginosis
The main causes behind the incidence of bacterial vaginosis are not very clear and are often attributed to the presence of a conglomeration of various species of bacteria in the vaginal region. It is also connected with a reduction in the levels of naturally produced hydrogen peroxide, which in turn leads to the development of lactobacilli in the effected region.
The growth in the number of various anaerobic bacteria may also cause bacterial vaginosis. Because of its diverse nature, the causes behind the diagnosis of this disease cannot be connected with the presence of a singular species of bacteria. Along with the practice of indulging in sexual activities with diverse or multiple partners, bacterial vaginosis is also connected with the usage of uterine contraceptives and antibiotics. Vaginal douching or excessive use of tobacco can also lead to this condition.
Diagnosis of Bacterial Vaginosis
The routine diagnosis of bacterial vaginosis is related to a series of queries put forward to the patient by the medical expert. Along with issues which may be connected with the diagnosis of more serious conditions of the vagina, it is important to understand the degree of infection present in the region and the symptoms which lead to the ultimate detection of bacterial vaginosis.
Fever, the presence of a new sexual partner, pelvic pain and a previous history of any STD, are certain symptoms which influence a pelvic examination which helps in providing an insight into the extent of the severity of the disease in the cervix and vaginal lining. A manual examination of the uterus and ovaries may be required as well. A microscopic examination of a sample of the vaginal discharge helps the gynecologist in distinguishing the presence of yeast vaginosis from bacterial vaginosis. Certain experts may also recommend a “Whiff Test “.
Treatment of Bacterial Vaginosis
In certain cases the symptoms connected with bacterial vaginosis may get resolved on their own. There are no known effective treatment processes of getting rid of this condition through home remedies. Antibiotic however go a long way in alleviating the discomforting signs and issues connected with bacterial vaginosis.
Pregnant women suffering from this condition are advised to take medical recommendations before attempting any other type of treatment method. Some of the medical treatments commonly used for treating the condition is the administration of Metronidazole (Flagyl), taken orally or through a gel used for topical application.
Though the oral pills may cause certain side effects which may prove to be unpleasant, they are the best treatments available for taking care of bacterial vaginosis. Women complaining of recurrent incidences of the disease are often prescribed a series of medicines and antibiotics, to get rid of their discomfort.
Complications Cconnected With Bacterial vaginosis
In most cases the symptoms start disappearing after proper medical treatment for bacterial vaginosis is initiated in the patient and the disease does not require any special or multiple follow-ups. However in the case of complications that may occur in certain women , there is a risk of contracting STDs and other hazardous diseases such as HIV, gonorrhea, genital herpes and Chlamydia.
The presence of bacterial vaginosis in pregnant women can lead to premature birth and labor along with an infection in the amniotic fluid and other discomforting symptoms in the pelvic organs and the uterus. Bacterial vaginosis may not be a very dangerous disease but its presence can lead to several unpleasant symptoms which necessitate timely medical intervention and treatment.
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