Foreign Body, Vagina (cont.)
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When to Seek Medical Care
A health care professional should be consulted when any change in vaginal discharge is present, particularly discharge which is foul-smelling or abnormal in color. The presence of a foreign body may cause abnormal vaginal bleeding.
If a foreign object was placed in the vagina and may still be present, the health care professional should be informed. Occasionally, an adult or adolescent woman may remember placing a tampon, but then be unable to remove it from the vagina. Recollection of the placement of a foreign body may assist the practitioner in the best method of care.
If a person places an object in the vagina and then is unable to remove it, a health care professional should be consulted promptly. Unusual objects may need to be removed using sedation or anesthesia in order to avoid pain. This may be particularly true of objects placed in the vagina of a small child or an adult who is unable to be cooperative with a vaginal exam. Some emergency departments allow sedation and removal of vaginal foreign bodies in the emergency department without going to an operating room.
Janice L Bacon, MD
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