Vulvovaginitis

Alternative Names

Vaginitis; Vaginal inflammation; Inflammation of the vagina

Definition of Vulvovaginitis

Vulvovaginitis is inflammation or infection of the vulva and vagina.

Causes, incidence, and risk factors

Vulvovaginitis can affect women of all ages and is extremely common. It can be caused by bacteria, yeasts, viruses, and other parasites. Some sexually transmitted infections (STIs) can also cause vulvovaginitis, as can various chemicals found in bubble baths, soaps, and perfumes. Environmental factors such as poor hygiene and allergens may also cause this condition.

Signs and tests

If you have been diagnosed with a yeast infection in the past, you can try treatment with over-the-counter products. However, if your symptoms do not completely disappear in about a week, contact your health care provider. Many other infections have similar symptoms.

Treatment

Treatment depends on what is causing the infection. Treatment may include:

Expectations (prognosis)

Proper treatment of an infection is usually very effective.

Review

Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Medical Director, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, University of Washington, School of Medicine; Susan Storck, MD, FACOG, Chief, Eastside Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Group Health Cooperative of Puget Sound, Redmond, Washington; Clinical Teaching Faculty, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc. – 6/5/2010

Female perineal anatomy

ADAM Medical Encyclopedia

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