One of the most common reasons for visits to your GYN is noted to be a spectrum of problems generally labeled vaginitis. This includes any issue with discharge, malodor, or discomfort of the vagina. Each one of these symptoms can indicate a particular bacteria, fungus, or potentially other underlying cause.
Since there are many different reasons for vaginitis, the symptoms can usually vary slightly and overlap.
Some of the possible symptoms your GYN doctor will ask about include the following:
- Foul smell or fishy odor
- Does it occur after a specific trigger (such as the end of your menstrual period or the day after intercourse)
- Redness or irritation of the vagina
CAUSES AND TREATMENTS
Your gynecologist can easily treat most forms of vaginitis
After Midtown GYN discusses your symptoms and believes you have a form of vaginitis, They will discuss some of the potential reasons you may be having these symptoms.
Gynecologists of Manhattan Women’s Health & Wellness offers comprehensive Obstetrics & Gynecology care in NYC for women of all ages. At our ob-gyn clinic, we provide a full range of gynecology services, from annual check-ups and routine pap smears to Vaginitis treatments and GYN procedures, surgeries performed in our office or the hospital. In addition, our state-of-the-art gynecology NYC facility is equipped with the latest ob-gyn equipment.
The vagina is a complex ecosystem of bacteria and fungus and an admixture of hormones and closely regulated to maintain the perfect pH and bacteria/fungal levels, so no one particular bacteria or fungus overgrows. However, if this ecosystem is thrown off by reasons discussed later, it allows one strain of bacteria or fungus, or sometimes both, to be overgrown and disrupts the environment causing distressing symptoms.
The most common causes of vaginitis include:
- Bacterial vaginosis, well known for its abbreviation, BV, is an overgrowth of bacteria naturally occurring within the vagina. It is not necessarily considered an STI. However, it commonly occurs after sex due to interactions with the bacteria and their environment in the vagina. BV can cause malodor and usually a thin gray discharge. Luckily it is usually easily treated with a short course of antibiotics or vaginal creams.
- Yeast, generally a candida species, again overgrows within the vagina due to imbalance or change in the environment. Yeast normally presents with clumpy white discharge and itching; Yeast can be very bothersome, especially if it occurs frequently. Vaginal flushes to reduce yeast infections followed by antibiotics can usually knock out even the most serious vaginal yeast infections. Yeast is also not considered an STI.
- Trichomonas Vaginalis, also known as “Trich,” is an STI known for its foul odor, vaginal discomfort, potentially vaginal bleeding, and usually abundant green discharge. However, sometimes it causes few or no symptoms at all. Trichomonas should always be treated with antibiotics, and your Midtown GYN will want you to come back in a few weeks later for retesting to make sure the infection was successfully and completely treated. Your partner will also need to be treated.
- Atrophic vaginitis is a common problem, particularly with the post-menopausal population. Oftentimes after menopause, the cessation of estrogen production by the ovaries leads to changes in the vagina, including loss of elasticity and dryness. These vary from woman to woman; however, some experience significant amounts of dryness to the point where they describe even walking as “feels like walking with sandpaper between my legs” or can even lead to small amounts of bleeding. After a thorough exam by your NYC gynecologist in Midtown, they may give you a daily lubricant to alleviate mild symptoms, or if no contraindications exist, may prescribe a hormone cream for a few weeks.
While these are the most common, there are frequently less common or different reasons for vaginitis. Hence, it is always important that if you experience any symptoms, to see your gynecologist for a correct and accurate diagnosis. This will also aid in ruling potentially serious underlying conditions.
Your Midtown gynecologist will always begin by taking a thorough history of your issue, whether discharge, pain, bleeding, or odor. They will want to know if this is the first time it’s happening or if you have had it several times in the past.
Next, your gynecologist may do a physical exam where they will use a speculum to see inside the vagina, notice any changes or potential problems, then likely take a swab of the discharge to send to the pathologist’s lab where they will be able to identify any overgrowths of bacteria, yeast, or other forms of vaginal pathogens.
Important Reminder: This information is only intended to provide gynecology guidance, not definitive medical advice. Please consult your OBGYN doctor about your specific condition. Only a trained, experienced gynecologist or certified gynecology specialist can determine an accurate diagnosis and proper treatment.
Have questions about Vaginal Discharge and Vaginitis Treatment? Then, please schedule an appointment with the best OBGYN in Midtown NYC, Dr. Fernando Mariz, by calling our office today.
New York City Locations:
Manhattan Women's Health & Wellness (Upper East Side)
983 Park Ave, Ste 1D17
New York, NY 10028
Manhattan Women's Health & Wellness (Midtown)
51 East 25th St, Ste 451
New York, NY 10010
Manhattan Women's Health & Wellness (Union Square)
55 W 17th St, Ste 104
New York, NY 10011