Ask the Nurse

I’ve struggled with bacterial vagina infections for months. I complete the antibiotics and still have the infection. How can I fix this as it’s frustrating for me and my partner? Is there a way my partner could be treated as well?

Bacterial Vaginosis (BV) (a condition NOT an infection) is common in women and is often a result of change in acidity of the vagina. Blood, semen and sweat can raise the vaginalpH, which increases yeast and bacterial overgrowth. A lower more acidic vaginalpH is associated with LESS vaginal yeast infection and BV.

Sometimes, women experience BV symptoms after their menstrual cycles, after intercourse, or after antibiotic use (when yeast may overpopulate the vagina). It is important to determine these patterns as it will help guide the best course of treatment for you. If you feel that the current therapy is not clearing your infection, it’s possible that additional cultures with sensitivities need to be obtained in order to ensure that the proper pathogen is being treated.

Additionally, if you notice that your infection clears while on antibiotics, but recurs, you want to make sure that you have a balanced pH of the vagina. I suggest the following home remedies to help maintain a normal pH:

  • You can use a product called repHresh, which is over the counter
  • Have your partner wash his genitals with plain soap and water before sexual activity
  • Avoid wearing pads/liners and thong underwear
  • Make sure you are taking adequate Vitamin D supplementation
  • Try taking an oral probiotic
  • Eat a yogurt daily

I also suggest a visit with your women’s health provider to discuss this further and see if you need to be on chronic suppressive therapy for your recurrent infections. Diabetes, HIV infection are some conditions to consider if you truly have recurrent significant vaginal infections.

All My Best,
The Speaking of Women’s Health Nurse

May 1, 2018 at 11:10am