According to its prevalence, candidal vulvovaginitis is second only to bacterial vaginosis. This situation has developed in recent years, as the incidence rate has increased almost 4 times.
The pathological process of this disease causes inflammation of the mucous membrane that lines the surface of the vulva and vagina. The main role in the pathogenesis of this process is assigned to the fungal infection of the genus candida (albicans species).
Microflora in the form of fungi of the genus Candida is present in the body of every woman. It may accumulate in small quantities in the gastrointestinal tract, or contained on the mucous surface of the genital organs. The process of inflammation occurs due to reasons that reduce the immune status of the body. They are:
- Long-term courses of antibiotic therapy with the use of broad-spectrum drugs. In this case, both pathogenic and beneficial microflora are destroyed, which causes an increased reproduction of fungal microorganisms.
- Any kind of hormonal contraception is the result of increased hormone levels, and as a result, an estrogen imbalance occurs, which is the impetus for the development of the pathological process.
- Violation of the protective function of the body due to long-term chronic diseases (HIV infection, diabetes mellitus, pathologies of the hematopoietic system).
- The period when a woman bears a child. In this case, the fungal microflora is a consequence of hormonal imbalance.
- Non-compliance with the elementary standards of intimate hygiene.
There are some other reasons for the abnormal reproduction of candidates in the vaginal microflora, but they are much less common.
Is the Disease Sexually Transmitted?
Despite the fact that this type of disease is not a type of venereal infection, there is a risk of infection after intimacy. This becomes possible in the following cases:
- when a woman has a growth of fungal microflora at an acute stage of development;
- if the man is the carrier of this pathogen, the symptoms of the pathological process may be completely absent.
Clinical manifestations of sexual infection with thrush (another name for candidiasis) may not manifest immediately. Their development is accompanied by a decrease in the functionality of the protective barrier of the body.
Sometimes there are cases of thrush by the following types of fungal infection:
- Through everyday objects of daily use. Such a situation is possible with the simultaneous use of personal and intimate hygiene, through bedding or underwear, as well as when visiting a swimming pool or public bath.
- Lack of personal hygiene can lead to infection. Such a transmission path is observed when the rules of washing are not followed, with the result that fungal pathogens penetrate the mucous membrane of the vagina from the rectal lumen.
- Newborns are infected with thrush if the mother has a diagnosis of vulvovaginal candidiasis at the time of delivery. Passage through the birth canal contributes to the infection of the baby.
A prerequisite in the treatment of sexual transmission of the pathogen is the treatment of both partners.
- There are abundant vaginal discharge, which have an unpleasant odor, and in their consistency and appearance resemble curd mass.
- The sensation of itching and burning increases at night.
- Sexual intercourse causes great pain, which is why a woman refuses sex.
- Discharges are scanty, with a white tint, or absent altogether.
- Mostly women complain about the periodic occurrence of itching in the area of genital lips.
The lack of proper therapy causes a number of negative situations that can manifest themselves as follows:
- stenosis of the lumen of the vagina;
- frequent inflammatory processes of the uterus appendages (adnexitis);
- If infection occurs during pregnancy, endometritis occurs:
- the child is infected during the process of delivery;
- may cause persistent infertility;
- pregnancy can end with spontaneous miscarriage;
- as a consequence of scratching in the intimate area, diseases of bacterial etiology are added.
Candida vulvovaginitis is a disease that is easier to prevent using prophylactic methods. It is especially important to maintain proper diet, do not abuse food that is rich in carbohydrates.
To monitor the state of immunity, to temper the body, and in the fall and spring to conduct courses with the use of multivitamin complexes. Every year it is necessary to undergo an examination by a gynecologist, and not to avoid planned medical examinations.