Although most vaginal yeast infections are the result of Candida albicans, a substantial minority of these infections are caused by Candida glabrata. Typically, Candida glabrata is the second leading cause of vaginal Candidiasis; accounting for approximately 5% of all vaginal infections. In the past, glabrata was called Torulopsis glabrata. This is no longer the primary nomenclature for this fungus. So, if you were wondering if the two had any similarity, the answer is they are both the same thing.
It is not uncommon for some forms of Candida glabrata to be able to withstand azole antifungal drugs. Itraconazole, miconazole (active ingredient in Monistat), ketoconazole, clotrimazole, and fluconazole are all common antifungal drugs a doctor might prescribe for you. If you have taken these drugs, and found little or no relief, you may have a strain of Candida glabrata that is resistant to these treatments.
Natural treatments can work where conventional drugs fail. Proving this, is one study, published in the Canadian Journal of Microbiology [2008, 54(11): 950-956, 10.1139/W08-097]. The research found that certain essential oils were able to effectively kill species of Candida that were resistant to fluconazole. In fact, the fluconazole resistant species of Candida were even more susceptible to essential oils than were the strains of Candida fluconazole would kill. Thus, using a natural remedy could quickly wipe out a drug resistant yeast infection.
One woman, Sarah Summer, suffered from recurrent yeast infections that doctors seemed unable to stop. After many trips to the doctor and failing to get rid of her yeast infections, she spent considerable time learning about her condition. Fortunately, she was able to stop her recurrent yeast infections permanently. She did this via the power of natural medicine. Sarah Summer has even published a book via a large U.S. based publishing company (learn more about this firm here). Summer is interested in helping, so she offers a 8-week refund guarantee to anyone who decides to get a copy of her work. Summer’s severe Candidiasis was maybe rare, but her treatment is able to totally cure a yeast infection in 12 hours; so, even if it's overkill, it could still be something to check out.
Having severe, chronic yeast infections that do not respond to treatment is not that uncommon. One study, published in Sexually Transmitted Infections [2001; 77: 212-213], studied 3 different women with vaginal thrush. Two of the women in the study, had Candida that was resistant to more than just one prescription antifungal drug. It may be, that your story will sound similar to that of the first woman in the study. The researchers refer to her as “Case 1” and they give a summary of her condition as follows:
A 42 year old woman presented with “recurrent vaginal thrush” since the age of 19. At referral she had had several recent swabs showing heavy growths of candida species in Gram stain microscopy despite 3 months' treatment with itraconazole 100 mg twice daily for 2 days every week, two Depo-provera (Pharmacia & Upjohn) injections, and a number of other unspecified antifungal treatments including courses of nystatin pessaries. None of these produced any symptomatic response. https://dx.doi.org/10.1136/sti.77.3.212
This type of condition may be something you are experiencing; repeat doctors visits, or use of over-the-counter treatments—yet, still no end to vaginal yeast infections. If you do, in fact, have Candida glabrata, you may not be able to get relief with some azole drugs—as mentioned earlier.
One study also looked at how herbal treatments worked against a strain of Candida albicans that was resistant to multiple drugs. The study was published in Molecules (2009, 14(2), 586-597) and details the methods for which this drug resistant yeast was tested. The researchers found, that multi-drug resistant Candida albicans, could indeed be cured by using the following herbs: gum arabic tree (Acacia nilotica), clove (Syzygium aromaticum), and cinnamon (Cinnamum zeylanicum).
Since Candida albicans is much more ubiquitous than glabrata, it is likely you have an infection caused by albicans. Thus, even if it is a drug resistant version of this fungus, you should be able to utilize a natural method to safely, and effectively, get rid of this vaginal problem.
Given this helpful study, it is pragmatic to draw the conclusion that natural treatments can work where conventional drugs cannot. Additionally, it is often far safer to use a natural remedy than to put a synthetic drug into your system; which can cause a host of negative side effects. You might not see too much about natural remedies on the television or in magazines; but, this is due to the fact there is no money to be made by a giant pharmaceutical company from their use. Money unfortunately, tends to drive our awareness. But, with the advent of the internet, there is more than enough information available on the efficacy of natural yeast infection treatments.
Natural Treatments for Vaginal Candida Glabrata
It is important to know that many yeast infections are caused by Candida living in the digestive system. If you have a healthy colony of yeast growing in your gut, it can very easily move from the rectum to the vagina; and, repeatedly infect you. If you want a solution to naturally remove this fungus in your gut, read the treatment plan at this page: Candida glabrata treatment guidelines.
After you have your digestive system sorted out, you can also start fighting Candida glabrata in the vagina. Here is one method to naturally heal your vagina:
- Cleanse the Vagina — One study done on rats was able to see improvement in vaginal candidiasis by washing of the vagina. Consequently, the first step to getting rid of a yeast infection, is to clean out the vagina by gently washing it with water and removing any excess yeast.
- Douche with ACV — Apple cider vinegar (ACV) can help to acidify the vagina and stop the progress of yeast naturally. But you need to use a diluted concentration; as plain ACV can cause irritation to the skin; and, it can cause chemical burns if it is applied too frequently or allowed to be in contact with the body for a long enough time. Nearly all Candida will be killed by a 1% concentration of ACV; so you don’t need much. Just simply douche with highly diluted ACV and let it sit in the vagina for a few minutes. Alternatively, you can use a very weak concentration of ACV with a tampon; and, insert it into the vagina (more on this here: Using an ACV tampon for yeast infections).
- Apply Essential Oils — Essential oils are a powerful tool, that harness the chemical constituents of medicinal plants; and, allow you to employ them easily. You should put some inert oil (such as olive oil) in a cup to act as a carrier. Then add one or two drops of the following essential oils: clove, thyme, oregano, cinnamon, and lemongrass. Make sure you are using 100% pure essential oils. Mix the oils together with the olive oil, and let a tampon soak in the mixture. Once absorbed by the tampon, insert the tampon into the vagina. Leave the tampon in as long as it feels comfortable. Make sure you remove it if you start to feel any pain. You may wish to experiment with smaller amounts of essential oil, to see how your particular body reacts to the oils.
- Nightly Maintenance — Take a bulb of garlic and get a few cloves from it. Peel the cloves and put them in gauze and insert it into your vagina before you go to sleep. Garlic is a powerful antifungal; and, will work through the night to combat Candida. Remove the garlic in the morning of course!
- Add Probiotics — To replenish the natural bacterial flora in your body, and to keep yeast at bay in the future, insert Lactobacillus acidophilus pills into your vagina in the morning. L. acidophilus will consume excess sugars in the vagina and secrete lactic acid; both of these actions will help keep Candida from reinfecting your vagina.
- Repeat as Necessary — If you do not have relief when you wake up in the morning, consider repeating this procedure for a few days. You can always try crushing the garlic up before you insert it, as this will allow it to form the chemical allicin; but be warned, you might irritate your vagina using crushed garlic. If you feel comfortable with stronger concentrations of essential oil; this might work better—however it could irritate your vagina if you try too high of a concentration.
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- http://www.nrcresearchpress.com/doi/abs/10.1139/W08-097 — In vitro activity of essential oils extracted from plants used as spices against fluconazole-resistant and fluconazole-susceptible Candida spp. Patrícia Pozzatti, Liliane Alves Scheid, Tatiana Borba Spader, Margareth Linde Atayde, Janio Morais Santurio, Sydney Hartz Alves. Canadian Journal of Microbiology, 2008, 54:950-956, 10.1139/W08-097
- https://dx.doi.org/10.1136/sti.77.3.212 — Combined topical flucytosine and amphotericin B for refractory vaginal Candida glabrata infections. Sex Transm Infect 2001;77:212-213
- http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/molecules14020586 — Antimicrobial Activity of Five Herbal Extracts Against Multi Drug Resistant (MDR) Strains of Bacteria and Fungus of Clinical Origin. Molecules 2009, 14(2), 586-597
- http://doi.org/10.1248/bpb.31.1501 — study done on mice using vaginal washing — Protective Activity of Geranium Oil and Its Component, Geraniol, in Combination with Vaginal Washing against Vaginal Candidiasis in Mice. Biological and Pharmaceutical Bulletin Vol. 31 (2008) No. 8 P 1501-1506