Contraceptive Technology and Reproductive Health Series: Home Page Contraceptive Technology and Reproductive Health Series Back to FHI Website
Sexually Transmitted Diseases
Introduction Contents Post-Test References Go To Presenter Info


Section 1
Section 2
Section 3

- Topics
- Introduction
- Objectives
- Approaches
- Laboratory
- Clinical
- Syndromic
- Syndromic
- Strengths
- Weaknesses
- Accuracy
- Genital Ulcer
- Algorithm
- Urethral
- Algorithm
> Vaginal
- Vaginitis
- Cervicitis
- Algorithms
- Algorithms
- Algorithms
- Abdominal
- Algorithm
- Algorithm
- Other Issues
- Treatment
- Screening
- The Four Cs
- Resources
- HIV Testing
- Vaccination
- Preliminary
- Summary


Previous pageNext page

Section 3 - STD Management

Vaginal Discharge Syndrome

Vaginal Discharge Syndrome table

Slide 63

If a woman has vaginal discharge, the provider uses the vaginal discharge algorithm. If she also complains of lower abdominal pain, the provider should use the lower abdominal pain algorithm instead, which we will discuss below.

Vaginal discharge is common and often seen in FP/MCH clinics. Women normally have some vaginal discharge, which may be more pronounced during certain phases of the menstrual cycle, during and after sexual activity, and during pregnancy and lactation. In general, women only seek care for vaginal discharge if they perceive it as unusual, or if it causes itching or discomfort.

In the vaginal discharge syndrome, symptoms are abnormal vaginal discharge, vaginal itching, painful urination and pain during sexual intercourse. The signs a provider should look for are abnormal vaginal discharge and, if a speculum exam is possible, cervical discharge. Abnormal discharge may have a different color, odor, consistency or amount than normal discharge.

Often, vaginal discharge indicates vaginitis. Less often, it indicates cervicitis. Sometimes both infections are present.

Infections that may cause vaginitis are trichomoniasis [trik”-o-mo-ní-ah-sis], the most common STD, or two naturally occurring infections. One is bacterial vaginosis. The other is candidiasis [can”-di-dí-ah-sis], also known as thrush or yeast infection.

Cervicitis is caused by gonorrhea or chlamydia, which are both bacterial STDs.



Previous page      Next page