Bacterial Vaginosis

Our bodies are continually working to maintain a healthy balance of “good” and “bad” bacteria. If that delicate balance is disrupted by an illness or infection, we may feel ill, experience side effects or, in some cases, increase our risk of developing a more serious condition.

Bacterial vaginosis is one such infection. A common infection caused by an imbalance of bacteria in the vagina, bacterial vaginosis can cause serious problems if not treated. It can lead to pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) and increase the risk of sexually transmitted diseases such as chlamydiagonorrhea and HIV. Pregnant women with bacterial vaginosis have a higher risk of miscarriage, early delivery or an infection after delivery.

Symptoms and Treatment of Bacterial Vaginosis

The most common bacterial vaginosis symptoms include:

  • An increase in vaginal discharge
  • Vaginal discharge that is cloudy, white, yellow, or green
  • Vaginal discharge that has a "fishy" odor
  • Itching and burning in the genital area
  • Pain during intercourse

Because some of these symptoms are associated with other conditions, such as a vaginal yeast infection, it is important to get an accurate diagnosis. Antibiotics are the standard bacterial vaginosis treatment and will usually clear the infection.

Mercy’s women's health specialists are trained in diagnosing and treating bacterial vaginosis and other infections, and can advise you on how to help prevent future infections. Our expert, concerned approach always puts you at the center of care.

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