The discomfort of vaginitis may have you feeling anxious, frustrated, embarrassed, exhausted and really ready for relief. Whether you’re experiencing symptoms like itchiness, pain and burning when you pee, or changes in vaginal discharge and smell — or all of the above — problems below the belt can have you ready to find answers.
At Cleveland Clinic, our specialists are here to help you figure out the cause of your vaginitis. We’ll work with you to determine exactly what’s causing it and, perhaps more importantly, how to put an end to it.
Why Choose Cleveland Clinic for Vaginitis Care?
Our expert providers understand that each case of vaginitis is unique and that there’s no one-size-fits-all treatment. We’ll listen carefully as you explain what you’re experiencing and dig deep to understand why past treatments haven’t worked. Then we’ll customize a treatment plan that’s right for you. Meet our team.
Our board-certified specialists in gynecology and obstetrics and reproductive infectious diseases have the extensive knowledge, experience and expertise to diagnose and treat your vaginitis — whatever the cause. People from around the world come to our specialists for diagnosis and treatment.
Innovation and research:
As part of our commitment to advancing medical knowledge about the conditions that cause vaginitis, our specialists are actively involved in continuing research and clinical trials related to genital disorders.
Skilled collaborative providers:
Your care team will collaborate with other Cleveland Clinic specialists, if needed, to provide you with the best possible care and outcome. With our vast network of healthcare providers, you’ll always have easy access to the care you need.
U.S. News & World Report named Cleveland Clinic a national leader in gynecologic care and a top U.S. hospital overall.
Vaginitis Diagnosis at Cleveland Clinic
Whether this is your first case of vaginitis or you’re prone to chronic symptoms, you can count on our team of specialists in obstetrics and gynecology to thoroughly explore, understand and treat your unique condition.
Your healthcare provider wants to know exactly what you’ve been experiencing, so they’ll begin by asking you questions — and really listening to your answers. Some topics they might bring up include:
- What you’ve been feeling (symptoms).
- How long this has been going on (duration).
- How often you have symptoms (frequency).
- What medications you’ve tried.
- Your personal habits and self-care routines.
- Your sexual history.
Oftentimes, this conversation alone will give your provider a good idea of the type of vaginitis you have. The most common types are bacterial vaginosis, yeast infections and trichomoniasis, but it can have other causes, too. After that first conversation, your provider may run a few tests to confirm your diagnosis or to investigate further. These can include:
- Performing a pelvic exam: A pelvic exam usually includes using a stainless steel or plastic instrument called a speculum to look inside your vagina and check for infection, inflammation and abnormal discharge.
- Collecting a specimen for testing: Your provider may take a sample (specimen) from your vagina to view under a microscope. This process, called microscopy, is one way that our specialists go the extra mile to find out what’s causing your vaginitis.
- Ordering a fungal culture: If your provider feels it’s necessary to help them make an accurate diagnosis, they may send your vaginal specimen to a microbiology lab for additional testing.
Who Treat Vaginitis
Vaginitis Treatment at Cleveland Clinic
There’s no one cause of vaginitis, which means there’s no one-size-fits-all solution, either. At Cleveland Clinic, treatment for vaginitis is highly personalized, from diagnosis to resolution and every step in between.
After your healthcare provider has figured out what’s causing your vaginitis, they’ll craft a treatment plan that best fits your needs.
Depending on the type of fungi present in your vagina, your provider may prescribe a pill, an antifungal cream or a suppository that you put into your vagina. This is a common course of treatment if it’s your first time having vaginitis or if you rarely experience this condition.
If you have chronic vaginitis and typical medications have failed, your provider may prescribe a course of treatment that has been specially formulated for you.
If your healthcare provider determines that your vaginitis is noninfectious (meaning there’s no fungi present in your vagina), your treatment will vary depending on the cause. If it’s happening because of a chemical in a product you use (an outside irritant) or from a decrease in estrogen (atrophic vaginitis), we might suggest changes to help.
Taking the Next Step
Vaginal pain and itchiness aren’t symptoms that you have to push through or endure. And while some vaginal discharge is normal, any changes in color, texture, smell and volume can be a sign that there’s a problem. Sometimes mild cases of vaginitis go away on their own — but why wait to find out? If you’re having problems that you suspect might be vaginitis, our providers are here to help you get to the bottom of it and to help you find relief.
Getting an appointment with Cleveland Clinic vaginitis experts is easy. We’re here to help you get the care you need.
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