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Bacterial Vaginosis

Description:

It is a condition caused by the overgrowth of normal vaginal bacteria.

Effects:

  • It can cause problems in pregnancy such as premature labour and low birth weight
  • It can contribute to pelvic inflammatory disease especially if you have a contraceptive coil in place

Cause:

  • Exact cause is not known
  • It affects women with many sexual partners and new sexual partners
  • It may be triggered by sexual intercourse or a period

Symptoms:

  • No symptoms in most cases
  • Abnormal vaginal discharge and smell
  • Genital itching

Treatment:

  • Antibiotics

Prevention:

  • It is likely to come back in about one-fifth of cases, especially after your period or after sex
  • Don’t use harsh soaps, antiseptics and sprays in the vaginal area, as they can disrupt your vagina’s normal balance

(Source: Health Service Executive (HSE), 2007 )