Unfortunately, most of the symptoms of vaginal infection are very similar no matter what type of bacterial vaginal infection you have. Even health professionals frequently get the diagnosis of vaginal infections wrong, and it isn't uncommon to hear about women with vaginal itch or discharge and treating themselves for a supposed yeast infection only to later discover that it was not due to yeast at all.
Keeping in mind that many women don't have any symptoms of vaginal infection and many women have symptoms that vary from "the norm", the following table allows you to compare symptoms of four of the main vaginal infections - yeast infection, bacterial vaginosis, trichomoniasis and cytolytic vaginosis.
Yeast infection is caused through the yeast Candida and the other three are different types of bacterial vaginal infection.
|Normal||Yeast||Bacterial vaginosis||Trichomoniasis||Cytolytic vaginosis|
|Itching||no||yes, especially at night||sometimes||yes||yes|
|Burning||no||yes||yes||yes||yes, especially on passing urine|
|Discharge||white or clear||thick, white curd-like||increased, thin, greyish, milk-like||sometimes frothy, grey-green, yellowish||abundant, whitish|
|Smell||not offensive||sour milkish||strong, fishy, increases after sex||strong||mild|
As you can see from the table above, most of the symtoms of vaginal infection that can be spotted by the woman herself are very similiar. Keep in mind that just because "the experts" say there is a discharge does not mean that YOU will experience the bacterial vaginal infection in the same way.
Your doctor has additonal tests that he/she can do to pinpoint just which infection you have.
Fem Dophilus is an oral probiotic capsule that helps normalize the urogential tract. It is specifically designed for women. It is not a "cure" in itself but when taken whilst undergoing treatment it stops infections from coming back.
It is uncommon (although it does happen) for a woman to have a yeast infection and bacterial vaginosis at the same time. The microclimate that they each enjoy are quite different and also it is believed that substances produced by BV actually inhibit the growth of yeast.
However, it is very common for a woman to have bacterial vaginosis and trichominiasis at the same time - some experts go so far as to say the majority of women with trich will also have BV1 but not the other way round. (ie most women with BV do NOT have trichomoniasis)
Many men do not have any symptoms with trichomoniasis and about half of all women with trich do not show any symptoms.1 It is still very important to be treated.
The table above is simply a very basic guideline. Remember even doctors frequently confuse the symptoms of vaginal infection.
1. Jane R. Schwebke and Donald Burgess. Trichomoniasis. Clinical Microbiology Reviews, October 2004, p. 794-803, Vol. 17, No. 4 0893-8512/04/DOI:10.1128/CMR.17.4.794-803.2004.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention