Women’s healthcare begins in adolescence and includes gynecological and obstetrical care, and breast health.
Information on COVID-19
Learn more about COVID-19, including FAQs and what you can do to help protect yourself and your family. View COVID-19 information.
IU Health Facilities have implemented visitor restrictions to help minimize the spread of COVID-19, flu and other respiratory viruses. View visitor restrictions.
Information on Previously Scheduled Outpatient Appointments
To ensure the health and safety of all our patients and team members during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, we’re making adjustments to some of our outpatient appointments. View updates to outpatient appointments.
Free Virtual Coronavirus Screenings
IU Health has launched a virtual clinic to offer individuals in Indiana regardless of age free coronavirus (COVID-19) screenings. View screening details.
Información sobre el COVID-19
Obtenga más información acerca del COVID-19, incluyendo las preguntas más frecuentes y lo que puede hacer para ayudar a protegerse y proteger a su familia. Ver información del COVID-19.
Restricciones para visitantes
Las instalaciones de salud de IU Health han implementado restricciones a los visitantes para ayudar a minimizar la propagación del COVID-19, la gripe y otros virus respiratorios. Ver restricciones para visitantes.
Información sobre citas ambulatorias previamente programadas
Para asegurar la salud y la seguridad de todos nuestros pacientes y empleados durante la pandemia del coronavirus (COVID-19), estamos haciendo ajustes en algunas de nuestras citas ambulatorias. Ver actualizaciones de citas ambulatorias.
Exámenes de coronavirus virtuales gratuitos
IU Health ha lanzado una clínica virtual para ofrecer a las personas en Indiana, independientemente de la edad, evaluaciones virtuales para la detección del coronavirus (COVID-19). Ver detalles de la evaluación.
Dr. Chemen Neal, an OB/GYN with IU Health Coleman Center for Women at University Hospital talks about what patients fear and what they need to know about one of the most common diagnoses among women.
Vaginitis - The very word can cause raised eyebrows and whispers among girlfriends. Patients are reluctant to discuss their condition for fear of embarrassment.
Yet it is a common condition - most women will have vaginitis at least once in their lives.
So what is it?
Vaginitis is a name for abnormal vaginal symptoms such as swelling, itching, or burning that can be caused by several different germs. The most common causes of vaginitis are bacterial vaginosis (BV), a yeast infection, and trichomonas (a sexually transmitted disease). Other symptoms can include a discolored discharge, pain during intercourse or urination, or strong fishy odor.
“Studies show 70 percent of women report having a yeast infection at least once in their lifetime and 20 percent of women with vaginitis will be diagnosed with a yeast infection; 40 percent will be diagnosed with bacterial vaginosis; and another 15 percent will be diagnosed with trichomoniasis,” said Dr. Chemen Neal, an OB/GYN with IU Health Coleman Center for Women at University Hospital.
Vaginitis is diagnosed by taking a small cotton swab sample from the vagina and testing it under a microscope. Typical treatment can include a topical antifungal cream and/or antibiotics.
What’s tricky is that many women go undiagnosed for fear of having “the difficult conversation” with their partner, family members, or medical provider.
“I have women who have had it for five years and call the doctor every month for medication. They take medication but symptoms come back, and I have women who won’t get married and won’t have sex because they feel embarrassed,” said Dr. Neal, one of the only physicians in the state who specializes in chronic vaginitis and vulvar diseases. “Unfortunately, we don’t understand what is the initiating event – the imbalance. We know the problem is the good bacteria in the vagina are gone (they produce acid that keeps bad bacteria away and maintain the PH balance). Something happens that makes the good bacteria go away and results in vaginitis.”
Here are some things doctors do know:
“If you think you are having abnormal vaginal symptoms you should see your gynecologist,” said Neal. “Symptoms can be confusing but women should also know that they aren’t always something benign. Some forms of vaginitis can lead to more serious issues such as pre-term and low weight births in pregnant women, and increased transmission of HIV and other sexually-transmitted diseases.”
-- By T.J. Banes, Associate Senior Journalist at IU Health.
Reach Banes via email at T.J. Banes or on Twitter @tjbanes.