Bacterial Vaginosis (Causes, Symptoms, Treatment) (cont.)
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.
William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR
Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.
In this Article
- Bacterial vaginosis facts
- What is bacterial vaginosis?
- What is causes bacterial vaginosis?
- What are symptoms of bacterial vaginosis?
- Is bacterial vaginosis contagious?
- Can you get bacterial vaginosis from a sexual partner?
- How is bacterial vaginosis diagnosed?
- What is the whiff test?
- What is the treatment for bacterial vaginosis?
- Are there over-the-counter (OTC) medications or home remedies for bacterial vaginosis?
- Can bacterial vaginosis be prevented?
- What are the complications of bacterial vaginosis?
- What is the prognosis (outlook) for bacterial vaginosis?
- Pictures of What's Causing Your Pelvic Pain - Slideshow
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- Find a local Obstetrician-Gynecologist in your town
Can bacterial vaginosis be prevented?
Because the cause and development of bacterial vaginosis is poorly understood, it can be difficult to take measures to prevent it from occurring. Reducing certain risk factors, such as limiting the number of sex partners, avoiding the use of vaginal douches, and taking all medications as directed when being treated for bacterial vaginosis, can help reduce a woman's risk of developing bacterial vaginosis.
What are the complications of bacterial vaginosis?
Bacterial vaginosis can resolve completely without complications after treatment. No special follow-up is necessary if the symptoms disappear.
Women with bacterial vaginosis are at increased risk for contracting HIV infection as well as other STDs including genital herpes, gonorrhea, and Chlamydia.
In pregnancy, bacterial vaginosis has been linked to premature labor, but the relationship is still not clear. Treatment is often recommended prior to hysterectomy, C-section (Cesarean birth), or IUD insertion in order to avoid spread of the disease into the pelvic organs.
However, treatment of bacterial vaginosis during pregnancy that is not causing symptoms has not been shown to decrease the incidence of premature births in most studies. For these reasons, screening and treatment for bacterial vaginosis during pregnancy is controversial, and research is still being conducted to determine its utility and value. Currently, routine screening of all pregnant women is not recommended. However, screening and treatment of bacterial vaginosis is sometimes recommended for women with a history of a preterm birth.
What is the prognosis (outlook) for bacterial vaginosis?
Bacterial vaginosis can be cured with antibiotics. Even after a woman has been cured, however, the condition often recurs. A second course of antibiotics is necessary if a woman experiences recurrent bacterial vaginosis that produces symptoms.
CDC.gov. Bacterial Vaginosis.
Medscape. Bacterial Vaginosis.
WomensHealth.gov. Bacterial Vaginosis Fact Sheet.
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