Bacterial Vaginosis - Treatment Overview
Treatment options for
bacterial vaginosis include:
Watchful waiting. Bacterial vaginosis symptoms may go away
on their own. This happens when the vaginal
lactobacilli organisms increase to their normal levels, and other bacteria
Antibiotic medicine (oral or vaginal).
Antibiotics can kill the problem bacteria causing bacterial vaginosis symptoms
but sometimes don't reverse the cause. So symptoms recur in
about 1 out of 3 of women after antibiotic treatment.2
For some women, bacterial vaginosis goes away without
treatment. But when it does not go away even with treatment, bacterial
vaginosis is frustrating and troublesome. And it can lead to preterm labor if
you have it during pregnancy. If present during pelvic surgery or invasive
vaginal procedures, bacterial vaginosis makes the reproductive tract vulnerable
to infection or inflammation, which has been linked to such problems as
pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). So your doctor will test and treat you with antibiotics for
bacterial vaginosis if you are:
- Having persistent symptoms.
Pregnant and have symptoms.
- Planning to have a
hysterectomy or surgical abortion. Treating bacterial
vaginosis with antibiotics beforehand may lower your risk of getting a
serious infection afterward.
Talk to your doctor about whether screening is right for
What to think about
If you are planning to become
pregnant and have symptoms or a history of bacterial vaginosis, talk to your
doctor about screening and treatment before you start a pregnancy.
doctor finds other problems during the exam, such as a possible
sexually transmitted infection (STI), appropriate
treatment will be recommended.
Since it probably is not passed
between a man and woman, treating a male sex partner or partners will not help
cure bacterial vaginosis.3 But for a woman with a
female sex partner, it is possible that bacterial vaginosis is passed back and
forth, although this is not yet proved. In this case, treating both partners