Bacterialvaginosis is a disease that's caused by the overgrowth of a type of bacteria that's called Gardnerella vaginalis, Gardnerella vaginalis. And as the name might suggest, this is the most common vaginal infection. Now I wanna put these really big quotes
around the term infection because the thing that's interesting about Gardnerella vaginalis is that it's a bacteriathat's naturally found in the vagina. Now some may consider this to be a sexually transmitted infection, which is interestingbecause it doesn't cause
any problems until there'stoo much of it there. So when we look to the causes of bacterial vaginosis, they are all things that change the vaginal environment. That can include acts like douching, so douching, or rinsing of the vagina. The other is having newor multiple sex partners.
And finally, another known cause is the use of antibiotics. This could be in the case of somebody that has a throat infection or a pneumonia that's on antibiotics which will then attackthe bacteria that exists within the vagina andallow Gardnerella vaginalis to overgrow and cause bacterial vaginosis.
So we've touched a little bit on it here, but I wanna draw it out. So when we talk about the pathophysiology of a disease, we'retalking about the mechanism by which that disease occurs. So in order to understandthe pathophysiology of bacterial vaginosis, we need to take a look at a sample of bacteria
that exists in the vagina. So I'll draw out someGardnerella vaginalis bacteria, and so I'll put this up in our key. This is the symbol forGardnerella vaginalis. And I'll draw a few of them around here, but I also wanna show that there are a lot of other bacteriathat exist in this sample. So if you really look at it here,
Vagina Warning Signs that Your Vagina is Unhealthy
Warning Signs that Your Vagina is Unhealthy1. Itching Burning A constant itching and burning sensation indicatesthe onset of a number of vaginal infections. When the harmful bacteria outnumber the goodbacteria in the vagina, the imbalance manifests itself through the physical symptom of itchingand burning. A certain amount of yeast is essential toward off harmful bacteria in the vaginal area. However, an overproduction of yeast can resultin a yeast infection, causing symptoms that include itching and burning.
An inflammatory sensation and itching withoutany foul odor emanating from the vagina are signs of a yeast infection, according to a2004 study published in The Journal of the American Medical Association. Itching can also be a reaction to chemicalsor ingredients in soaps, creams, contraceptive foams and prepackaged douching mixtures. These mixtures can alter the bacterial balanceand acidity of the vagina that protect it against infections. 2.
Smelly Discharge Itï¿½s unlikely for your vagina to smell likea bed of roses, but if you notice a recurrent strong odor, one that even transfers to yourundergarments, it might be a sign of an infection. An excess of harmful bacteria causes bacterialvaginosis. A foulsmelling vaginal discharge is oftenthe first and most common symptom of this infection. A ï¿½fishy odorï¿½ is one of the major symptomsof bacterial vaginosis, according to a 2011 study published in the International Journalof Womenï¿½s Health.
This discharge may especially occur afterintercourse. Pregnant women who contract bacterial vaginosisrun a risk of delivering their baby prematurely, according to the Centers for Disease Controland Prevention. It also increases the risk of contractingsexually transmitted diseases (STDs), including HIV, and may sometimes lead to pelvic inflammatorydisease. Therefore, seek medical attention right awayif you notice a vaginal odor. 3. Discoloration Excessive Discharge
Vaginal discharge is the bodyï¿½s naturalmechanism to keep the vagina lubricated and flush out harmful bacteria. Normal vaginal discharge ï¿½ clear or whiteand does not give off a bad odor. A brown or red discharge that occurs rightafter a menstrual cycle is usually not a matter of concern. However, if you experience brown or red dischargeon normal days between periods, seek medical attention as it could be indicative of cervicalcancer. If it occurs during early pregnancy, it couldsignify a miscarriage.
A green or yellow, smelly and frothlike dischargeis not normal and may be a sign of trichomoniasis, an STD. A watery white, gray or yellow discharge mightbe a symptom of bacterial vaginosis. While the amount of discharge differs fromwoman to woman, recurrent and excessive discharge may also indicate bacterial vaginosis. Seek medical attention right away if you noticea discoloration in your vaginal discharge. 4. Abnormal Bleeding