Bacterial Vaginosis

What Causes Bacterial Vaginosis?

To successfully treat and prevent recurrence of bacterial vaginosis we need to understand and — if possible — remove the underlying causes and risk factors.  We need to ask: "What else is going on inside the body that might allow bacterial vaginosis to develop?"

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Accurate diagnosis of the factors behind bacterial vaginosis consists of three steps:

Step 1: List the Possible Causative Factors

Identify all disease conditions, lifestyle choices and environmental risk factors that can lead to bacterial vaginosis.  Here are three possibilities:
  • Lupus (SLE)
  • Low Estrogens
  • Low Progesterone

Step 2: Build a Symptom Checklist

Identify all possible symptoms and risk factors of each possible cause, and check the ones that apply:
very dry eyes
lupus
regular infections
difficulty conceiving children
mild facial burning/tingling
irritability related to cycle
mouth sores
current birth control pill use
minor health decline
somewhat elevated basophil count
high sensitivity to bright light
history of seizures
... and more than 50 others

Step 3: Rule Out or Confirm each Possible Cause

A differential diagnosis of your symptoms and risk factors finds the likely cause of bacterial vaginosis:
Cause Probability Status
Low Estrogens 94% Confirm
Lupus (SLE) 30% Unlikely
Low Progesterone 1% Ruled out
* This is a simple example to illustrate the process

Arriving at a Correct Diagnosis

The Analyst™ is our online diagnosis tool that learns all about you through a straightforward process of multi-level questioning, providing diagnosis at the end.

If you indicate vaginal problems, The Analyst™ will ask further questions including this one:
Have you had vaginal infections that were NOT caused by yeast? Symptoms, if any, may include discharge, a foul odor, irritation and itching.
Possible responses:
→ No / don't know
→ In the past, but none for over a year
→ Possibly / It has been suggested in the past year
→ Yes, 1 to 3 within the past year
→ Yes, ongoing problem / more than 3 in past year
Based on your response to this question, which may indicate history of bacterial vaginosis, suspected bacterial vaginosis, bacterial vaginosis or chronic bacterial vaginosis, The Analyst™ will consider possibilities such as:
Estrogens Low

A decrease in estrogen results in several vaginal changes.  The vaginal lining becomes thinner and more fragile resulting in an increased risk of bacterial infection.

Lupus, SLE (Systemic Lupus Erythematosus)

Lupus patients are at an unusually high risk for contracting candida (yeast) infections.

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