Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.
Mary D. Nettleman, MD, MS, MACP is the Chair of the Department of Medicine at Michigan State University. She is a graduate of Vanderbilt Medical School, and completed her residency in Internal Medicine and a fellowship in Infectious Diseases at Indiana University.
Bacterial vaginosis: Your health care provider may treat you with
antibiotics such as metronidazole (Flagyl) or clindamycin (Cleocin). Generally,
male sex partners are not treated. Many women with symptoms of bacterial
vaginosis do not seek
medical treatment, and many women without symptoms decline treatment. This
condition does not go away without treatment.
Yeast infection: If this is the first time you have had a yeast infection,
a doctor should be consulted before trying any home remedies or over-the-counter
products. Your doctor will usually recommend that you use vaginal creams and
vaginal applications rather than oral medication. Pregnant women usually will be
treated longer than nonpregnant women and be closely monitored.
Severe infections need antifungal medication, which is normally taken
orally as a single dose. This could include fluconazole (Diflucan) and
(Sporanox). These drugs have a cure rate of greater than 80%. These
medications can also be given for three to five days with similar cure
rates. The medications might cause liver problems. Some of the symptoms of liver problems
are yellow skin, yellow eyes, and pale stools. If you have any of these signs,
contact your doctor right away. Your doctor will probably advise you to stop the
medication immediately, perform blood tests, and monitor your liver functions.
For less severe infections, medications can be used as a vaginal tablet or
cream applicator. One example is nystatin (Mycostatin), with a cure rate of
about 75%-80%. Miconazole (Monistat-7, M-Zole) and clotrimazole (Mycelex,
Gyne-Lotrimin) have a cure rate of about 85%-90%.
In some cases, a single dose of medication has been shown to clear up yeast
infections. In other cases, a longer period of medication (three days or seven days)
might be prescribed.
For recurrent infection (more than four episodes per year), oral fluconazole
and itraconazole or vaginal clotrimazole might be needed for six months.
In pregnant women, a longer course of treatment is needed. It is very
important to consult with your doctor before treatment.
Trichomoniasis: Trichomoniasis is treated with metronidazole. It usually is
given in a single dose. If you take this drug, do not drink alcohol because
mixing the two substances occasionally can cause severe
nausea and vomiting. Both
sex partners are treated with the medicine even if they do not have signs of the