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A 29-year-old female asked:

how can i get rid of bv permantly? been suffering for years took many antibiotics and ointment and gels nothing works.... help!?

2 doctor answers4 doctors weighed in
Dr. Laura McMullen
Pediatrics 21 years experience
The : The most common reason for bad smelling discharge in a woman is bacterial vaginosis (bv). Bv is not a sexually transmitted disease, but is an imbalance between the "good" and "bad" bacterial that normally live in the vagina. Douching and having sex can both put you at risk since these activities cause a change in the vaginal environment leading to an overgrowth of "bad" bacteria. Many women will complain of a fishy odor, increased discharge and a few may even have itching and discomfort. It is diagnosed by the doctor testing your vaginal discharge. Bv is typically treated with a short course of antibiotics. Recurrent BV is very common. Even though BV is not considered a sexually transmitted disease, using condoms and treating the male partner have both been shown to decrease reoccurence of bv. Other behaviors pertaining to hygiene such as wiping "back to front", wearing cotton panties and avoiding douching can also decrease bv. You can also talk to your doctor about long-term topical treatments.
Dr. Michael Ein
Infectious Disease 48 years experience
See below: After treatment with metronidazole, Clindamycin or tinidazole, try oral and/or vaginal lactobacillus containing probiotic preparations which have had variable success. Consider having your sexual partner treated with Metronidazole or clindamycin. Recurrent disease has been associated with colonization of the sex partner, inconsistant condom use and has been halved with estrogen contraceptives.

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Last updated Oct 3, 2016

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