Is bacterial vaginosis curable? How is it treated?

By | July 26, 2017

Bacterial Vaginosis is self-limiting and goes away over a period of time. Other cases of BV after it self-healed and worsen after sexually intercourse. Despite being self-limiting, BV should be treated properly through medication to avoid recurrence and being at risk for other sexually transmitted diseases. Bacterial Vaginosis is a treatable condition and doctors often prescribe antibiotics and proper care management.

Accurate Diagnosis is the Key

A clinical intra-vaginal swabbing is done to diagnose the infection. This aims to identify the following criteria:

*fishy odor on wet mount

* Decrease in normal acidity level- this is done through the use of litmus paper ph. indicator test. The normal acid level in the vagina ranges from 3.8 to 4.2 and a 4.5 acidity result suggests alkalinity and bacterial vaginosis is possible.

*Existence of clue cells in wet mount- this is done with the use of sodium chloride solution dropped into a slide that contains vaginal discharge sample. Clue cells or bacteria-coated epithelial cells could be seen once the sample once placed under a microscope.

Two positive results from the given criteria is enough to come up into a BV diagnosis but if a vaginal discharge is unavailable, you may use the same method but it needs 3 positive results to raise a red flag.

Even after confirmed diagnosis, physicians still run a differential diagnosis to make sure that their analysis is accurate. Other sexually transmitted disease has similar symptoms with bacterial vaginosis so a differential diagnosis is necessary to come up with an effective treatment plan.
Differential Diagnosis for BV:

*normal vaginal secretion



*Aerobic vaginitis

Clinical Diagnostic Tests

*AMSEL Criteria

*Gram Stain

*Nugent Score

BV Prevention

Although the cause of this condition hasn’t been established yet, there are possible preventive measures that women might consider to avoid future infection and recurrence.

*Refrain from using douching method- The vagina cleanses itself naturally through lactobacilli. When douching, the solution will spontaneously alter with the vagina’s normal ph. level which may lead to bacterial growth. Remember, the body will automatically reject any foreign object applied or used into it.

*Practice monogamy if abstinence is not possible- Having multiple sex partners will put you at high risk for other STD’s. The best way to prevent it is to develop psychological contentment towards 1 sex partner. After all, contentment is in the mind!

*Increase probiotic intake- Probiotic consumption- it is believed to be a way of preventing BV. Although not supported with factual data, this is still recommended as this can help your whole physical health in general.

Proper Treatment

Once you notice the abnormal changes in your body and other symptoms, you should call your doctor immediately for accurate diagnosis and treatment.

Due to its bacterial nature, Bacterial Vaginosis is typically treated with antibiotics such as clindamycin and metronidazole. These medications are often administered via oral or vaginal insertion.

Other treatment is also given especially to recurring cases of BV which includes penicillin, nitroimidazoles and macrolides.

The reccurence rate is often triggered by sexual activity and unprotected sex. Contaceptives like estrogen containing birth control method decreases the chance of reccurence.