Vaginitis are common inflammatory conditions in the vagina and general inferior genital area of the woman due to an imbalance of the vaginal flora that favors infections, irritants or hormonal disorder.
INDICATIONS – IMPORTANCE
Vaginitis is often asymptomatic. In the case of symptoms, however, they may be:
- Unexpected secretions with particular – unpleasant odor
- Feeling burning during urination
- Itching or redness in the external urogenital area
- Annoyance or pain during or after sexual intercourse
Agents favoring vaginitis are:
- Use of antibiotics, contraceptives
- Frequent vaginal lavages (especially with pH-disruptive soaps)
- Systemic diseases (diabetes, dermatitis, autoimmune)
- Poor hygiene
- Psychological or physical stress
90% of cases are caused by:
- Common Bacterial Infections: Gardnerella vaginalis and Mycoplasma hominis. B- ulcerative infection which can be caused by a combination of bacteria. Their over-development is caused by an imbalance of vaginal flora. It is not sexually transmitted, but usually occurs in sexually active women. As many as 50% are asymptomatic, while in other cases the symptoms are abnormal secretions, fish odor, especially after a sexual act, urinary pain, stinging and dry vagina.
- Candida Mycosis: Candida lives naturally in small colonies in the vagina but also in the mouth and the gastrointestinal men and women. Pathological mycosis causes stinging and redness and is usually not sexually transmitted. It is common after taking antibiotics, in case of unregulated diabetes, pregnancy and taking contraceptives. They may also occur in hormonal disorders, thyroid disorders, corticosteroid uptake and immune disorders. Their treatment is done with the appropriate antifungal medications.
- Trichomonas vaginalis: It is a parasite sexually transmitted. The infection may be asymptomatic but it may also cause spontaneous, greenish-yellow secretions with poor smell, stinging, burning sensation in urination, poor sensation in the lower abdominal area, and pain in the vagina during sexual intercourse. Symptoms become stronger after menstruation.
Less often, vaginitis can be caused by:
- Allergic reaction or irritation to chemicals in creams, sprays and by contact with specific clothing
- Atrophic vaginosis in menopause due to decreased estrogen and normal salivary glands
- Hormonal disorders
Vaginitis can develop sexually transmitted :
- Chlamydia are sexually transmitted parasites that are mostly asymptomatic.
- Genital herpes (HSV II) is sexually transmitted and has a pain symptomatology.
- Human papillomavirus (HPV) is transmitted sexually and is responsible for the formation of vertebrates.
- HIV infection
LABORATORY SCREENIG TESTS
Preventive tests for the detection of vaginal infections are:
A culture in vaginal fluids on common infections (covers 90% of cases of vaginosis) with :
- Immediate microscopic examination of vaginal fluids for the assessment of flora and vaginal physiology
- Cultivation for aerobic and anaerobic microorganisms and antibiotics.
Second level in sexually transmitted microbial infections
- Chlamydia cultivation Direct detection of the parasite in vaginal fluids
- HSV II IgG / IgM Indirect detection of genital herpes antibodies in blood
- HPV by DNA analysis Immediate subtype assay – virus typing in vaginal fluids
- HIV Ag-Abs
Information selected from :
- Interpretation of Diagnostic Tests – J.Wallach
The exact choice of tests required, is under the responsibility of your treating physician
Editor: I. Gratsias Lab Director / Clinical Biochemist
Last Update May 2019
Medical Tests performed with analytical systems and reagents
by SIEMENS-USA & BECMAN COULTER-USA