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Are you unsure if you have a yeast infection or bacterial vaginosis? If you are experiencing symptoms of both, you might even have both types of infection. Bacterial vaginosis is caused by an overgrowth of pathogenic bacteria in the vagina. Yeast infections are caused by the overgrowth of a yeast in the Candida genus; typically Candida albicans. It is likely you have either one or the other vaginal malady; however, since both can be present in the vagina simultaneously, you might have both.
One telltale sign of a yeast infection are patches of creamy white lesions in the vagina or affected area. These lesions often bleed slightly if scraped away. If you're not noticing any “fishy” odor coming from the vagina or from vaginal discharge, you likely have just a yeast infection. The discharge caused by a yeast infection, if present, will look like cottage cheese and have a “yeasty” odor similar to beer or bread. Typically irritation and itching will nearly always be present as well. Conversely, if you do not see any white lesions in the vagina or have cottage cheese like vaginal discharge, and don’t have any genital itching you you may not have a yeast infection.
If you don’t have the signs of a yeast infection but do have a thin greyish vaginal discharge and have a foul fishy smelling vagina you likely have bacterial vaginosis. Itching can also accompany bacterial vaginosis as well, so it is not a great indicator of what type of infection you have.
Vaginal Infection Research
One study was fairly comprehensive in that it analyzed 501 women who complained of vaginal discharge or itching in the vaginal area. The study was published in Infectious Diseases in Obstetrics and Gynecology (2001; 9:221–225). These women were screened to see if they indeed had a yeast infection. Of the 501 women, about 73% were positive for Candida; over 80% of Candida positive women had Candida albicans. This suggests that if you do have a vaginal discharge, or experience uncommon vaginal itching, you likely have a yeast infection. Factors that were correlated to the presence of Candida were antibiotic use and the use of oral contraceptives. If you have taken either of these forms of medication, you are more likely to have Candida and not bacterial vaginosis.
The chart below was taken from the study in Infectious Diseases in Obstetrics and Gynecology. The chart shows some of the factors that seemed to predispose women to being positive for Candida infection or some other vaginal malady. The “p” referred to by the lower part of the chart refers to the accuracy in terms of probability of the statistics presented.
Candida, Trichomonas vaginalis, and Gardnerella vaginalis
Another study shows us how difficult it can be to differentiate between three common types of vaginal infection: yeast infection (Candida species), Trichomoniasis (Trichomonas vaginalis), and bacterial vaginosis (Gardnerella vaginalis). The study was published in Health SA Gesondheid [6.1 (2001): 21-27]. The study utilized 70 different pregnant women who had a vaginal infection of some kind. The study evaluated how well a clinic could initially diagnose these women using a medical history exam and pictures of various vaginal infections. Surprisingly, the clinic misdiagnosed the infections quite frequently. This indicates that mild types of infections without direct symptoms can be difficult even for professionals to diagnose.
The chart below shows the results of the study. The hypothesized diagnosis is shown in the left column and the actual causal infection is shown in the middle column. The right column has comments that further explain the differences between the other columns.
Given this inaccuracy demonstrated by clinical professionals, it is possible that you could misdiagnose yourself. There is a more efficacious way to be more certain if your problems are being caused by yeast. Candida Hub has adapted a test developed by the late Dr. William Crook; an expert on the topic of yeast and how it influences the health of individuals. There is a short version of this test if you don’t have too much time to invest; and, a long version of this test that can give a more comprehensive assessment. Remember, Candida can live in your digestive system and have far more negative effects on you than just a vaginal infection. To check out these tests visit this page: yeast infection tests.
Bacterial Vaginosis Symptoms
If you want to try and self diagnose yourself, here are the symptoms of bacterial vaginosis. Note that the fishy smell will likely be the most useful to tell if you have this as a yeast infection will not create such an odor. Also, many women with BV don’t have any signs or symptoms at all. Also if you have had many or unusual sexual partners recently you may have the STD Trichomoniasis; conversely, if you have had no unusual sexual activity it is likely not an STD affecting you. The following are common BV symptoms:
- A malodorous “fishy” smell emanating from the vagina; especially after sexual intercourse
- A liquid, thin discharge from the vagina that may be greyish or whitish
- Unusual or strong itching of the skin around the vagina
- Burning sensations while you are urinating
Typical Yeast Infection Symptoms
If this is your first experience with what could be a yeast infection, it may be prudent to have a doctor perform some tests and come to a definite answer. If you have had a history with yeast infections, then you probably know one when you see it. If you’d like to self diagnose your condition here are some common yeast infection symptoms:
- A non-odorous thick, whitish vaginal discharge that is similar in consistency to cottage cheese
- Thin or watery vaginal discharge
- Rash around the vagina
- Pain in the vagina and general soreness down there
- Swelling of the vulva and redness of the vulva
- Pain or a burning sensation during sexual intercourse or urination
- General itching or irritation of the vagina and vulva
Natural 12 Hour Candida Infection Treatment
If you are one of the unfortunate victims of recurrent or chronic yeast infections, there are a lot of women just like you. One of these women, Sarah Summer, suffered from one of the most extreme occurrence of vaginal Candidiasis. Sarah’s problem with recurrent yeast infections became severe enough to where she sought professional medical advice. Her doctor would prescribe medications for her; but, always she would have the same repeat infection a little while after treatment.
At one of her last visits to the doctor for another vaginal yeast infection her doctor informed her that her infection had become even worse than before. Apparently the Candida in her vagina had developed long tendrils into the skin and actually had developed into a mold. Her doctor simply said her condition was not treatable.
Instead of give up, Sarah Summer decided that medications that deal only with symptoms were the problem. She diligently researched medical information regarding Candidiasis and isolated the root causes of her malady. After her husband Robert and her spent many long hour reading and experimenting, they finally developed a solution. Surprisingly, Sarah’s treatment finally totally stopped her yeast infection recurrence. Other women who tried this same treatment reported that they got better rapidly; all it took was a total of 12 hours for women to get rid of their yeast infections.
Sarah Summer has published a book detailing her all natural, safe treatment that focuses on the root causes of Candidiasis. Summer states that you will be free from Candida’s grasp on your body and back to normal health in 12 hours time. She also offers a total refund to anyone who wants one up to 8 weeks after purchasing the book. It is available for digital download, so you don’t have to wait for something to come in the mail. All her orders are handled by a branch of the U.S. based Keynetics Incorporated. Summer also provides her email at the bottom of the site to answer any queries you might have for her.
- http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/S1064744901000369 -- Linhares, Iara M., et al. "Differentiation between women with vulvovaginal symptoms who are positive or negative for Candida species by culture."Infectious diseases in obstetrics and gynecology 9.4 (2001): 221-225. PDF Available Here
- http://www.hsag.co.za/index.php/HSAG/article/viewFile/54/49 -- Botha, D. E., and R. Van der Merwe. "Diagnosis of vaginal infection in pregnancy: research." Health SA Gesondheid 6.1 (2001): 21-27.
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