Vulvovaginitis: Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment

Vulvovaginitis affects women of all ages; it is an inflammation in the vagina and vulva caused by a fungal bacterium or a parasitic infection.

No other concept in vaginal health is as important as the state of the vagina’s ecosystem and the hormonal changes of the menstrual cycle that influence it. The range of types of bacteria is immense, including species of Staphylococcus, Streptococcus, bacteria, Lactobacillus, and Candida (Candida albicans).

But what happens when there are too many lactobacilli?

Several species of lactobacilli ferment a lot of glycogen, glucose in lactic acid, carbon dioxide, alcohol, formic acid, acetic acid, and hydrogen peroxide. When lactobacilli grow too much, many acids reproduce, irritating the vulva and itching.


The most common symptom is itching, but the irritation of the vulva and dysuria are often present as well. Cyclic and recurrent symptoms usually occur during ovulation and get worse before menstruation. Once the onset of menstrual flow occurs, the blood increases the vaginal pH, and the symptoms start significantly.

Other symptoms associated with this condition are pain during intercourse, painful urination, and the characteristic odor.

Upon physical examination, the vulva may appear red and slightly swollen, with a small amount of white and lumpy discharge. The tissues of the vulva can become a little sensitive due to discomfort during the examination with the speculum. The cervix, vagina, and uterus are normal unless there is also some other type of co-infection.


The key is in the microscopic examination. Repeat microscopic studies revealing the same findings are confirmation of Vulvovaginitis. Each episode of vaginitis symptoms may be due to a different cause.


Treatment for Vulvovaginitis

The goal of therapy is to reduce excessive lactobacilli growth and provide relief of symptoms. The use of antifungal agents, both conventional and alternative, must be interrupted since these agents can contribute to the recurrence of the disease. The use of lactobacilli in yogurt, supplements, and suppositories should be discontinued. It may also be advisable to suspend the service of tampons since the menstrual flow acts very similar to an alkalizing agent, raising the vaginal pH and generating the proliferation of lactobacilli.

Seat baths with baking soda offer relief by removing irritating acid secretions from contact with vulvar tissues; It is also effective as a local calming effect for the tissue where itching occurs. Consider douching with baking soda by mixing 1-2 tablespoons in one liter of hot water in the bathtub or the toilet once or twice a week in the symptomatic phases.

Other recommendations may be prudent:

  • Reduce sugar in the diet.
  • Avoid soap in the genital area. Instead, wash with running water.
  • Wear all-cotton underwear, wash with mild soap and hot water, and thoroughly rinse.
  • Avoid sexual intercourse during symptoms. Oral sex should also be avoided during symptomatic periods because the bacteria in the partner’s mouth can irritate the vulva.<