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Vaginitis and Vaginal Infections

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When to Seek Medical Care for a Vaginal Infection

You should seek medical care for a vaginal infection any time you have pain. Although vaginal infections may cause unpleasant itching, they should not cause pain.

Call for an appointment with your health care provider if this is the first time that vaginal yeast infection symptoms have occurred, or if you are unsure if you have a yeast infection. (If you are sure that you have a yeast infection, you can treat the disorder with over-the-counter medications available at the pharmacy.) But if your symptoms do not respond to one course of over-the-counter treatment, you may not have a yeast infection.

Vaginal yeast infections, although uncomfortable, are usually not life-threatening. You should see your health care provider. In addition, seek care for any of the following: 

    • Foul-smelling or yellow vaginal discharge
    • Any stomach or back pain
    • Vomiting or fevers
    • If symptoms return within two months

Other pelvic conditions with symptoms similar to vaginal yeast infections need to be checked in a hospital's emergency department. Seek medical care if the following conditions develop:

    • You have vaginal discharge associated with fever, vomiting, and abdominal pain, or you have vaginal discharge accompanied by vaginal bleeding that is not a normal menstrual period.
    • Your symptoms have not improved in three days, a large amount of vaginal discharge is seen, or if initial symptoms worsen.
    • You have greenish or large amounts of discharge or fever.
    • You have been taking antifungal drugs for a yeast infection and you develop yellow skin, yellow eyes (the white part is yellow), or pale stools.
    • Lesions or rash develops elsewhere (tender, red, pus-filled bumps, which can spread to the thighs and anus).
    • Dizziness develops.

 

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