What is it?

Bacterial vaginosis is a type of vaginal inflammation caused by an overgrowth of bacteria that are naturally present in the vagina, which upsets the natural balance.
Bacterial vaginosis is more common among women in their reproductive years, but it can affect women of any age. The cause is not completely understood, but certain activities, such as unprotected sex or frequent rinsing, increase the risk.

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Signs & symptoms

Bacterial vaginosis symptoms may include thin, gray, white, or green vaginal discharge, foul-smelling "fishy" vaginal odor, vaginal itching, and burning during urination. But, many women with bacterial vaginosis have no symptoms.
In some cases, bacterial vaginosis can lead to further complications such as preterm birth, sexually transmitted infections, and pelvic inflammatory disease.

Diagnosis

The diagnosis of bacterial vaginosis is based on medical history and pelvic examination. During the pelvic exam, the doctor takes a sample of vaginal secretions to check the bacteria in the vagina. The doctor also tests the vaginal pH. A vaginal pH of 4.5 or higher is a sign of bacterial vaginosis.

Treatment

Treatment for bacterial vaginosis includes antibiotics such as Metronidazole, and Clindamycin, which are available as a topical cream or gel, or Metronidazole, Tinidazole, and Secnidazole, which are taken orally.
You may need to continue treatment after the symptoms go away because early discontinuation of treatment may increase the risk of recurrence.
Pregnant women with symptoms are at risk of premature birth or low birth weight, so the treatment is especially important for them.
Bacterial vaginosis can spread between female sexual partners, therefore female partners should seek testing and may need treatment.

☝️ This is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with your physician before making any medical decision.

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