What is Bacterial Vaginosis?

Bacterial Vaginosis (BV) is the most common of vaginal infections. It will usually present as a gray-white discharge, and is often accompanied with a "fishy" odor. Often it is the odor which bothers women the most, and it is most noticeable after intercourse. The normal vaginal flora consists of predominantly lactobacillus acidophilus.

Acidophilus produces acid as it grows and suppresses the growth of other bacteria. If this balance is disturbed ( antibiotics, douching, etc.) other bacteria will overgrow. BV is not usually considered sexually transmitted, and treating the partner is unnecessary.

Treatment is aimed at killing the abnormal bacteria with antibiotics specifically not affecting acidophilus. Unfortunately, BV is commonly recurrent, and repeated treatments or modifications of behaviors such as douching may be needed.

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