August 5, 2021 | Female Body, Guide, Orientation | by Dr. Richey
We call vaginal discharge the secretions that come from the vagina. Having a certain amount of vaginal discharge is normal, especially during the fertile period. The glands of the cervix produce a transparent substance that can turn whitish or yellowish when exposed to air. A normal variation and that does not suppose any infection. However, there are other cases that need to be analyzed. Let’s see which ones …
VARIATIONS IN VAGINAL FLOW
Vaginal discharge can vary in:
Consistency (thick, pasty, liquid)
Color (transparent, cloudy, bloody, white, yellowish, greenish)
Odor (normal, odorless, smelly)
The amount of mucus produced by the glands of the cervix varies throughout the entire menstrual cycle and depends on the amount of estrogens circulating in the body.
After menopause, with the decrease in estrogen (a hormone produced by the ovary) there is less vascularization of the vagina and less discharge secretion.
CHANGES IN THE FLOW THAT MAY BE AN INDICATION OF VAGINAL INFECTION
A vaginal discharge that suddenly changes color, odor, or consistency, or increases or decreases significantly in quantity, may be a sign of an infection.
Vaginal infections are a frequent reason for consultation in Primary Care and Hospital Emergencies, representing 20% of gynecological consultations, the most frequent being:
· Bacterial vaginosis: Bacteria that normally live in the vagina multiply in an exaggerated way, causing a grayish discharge and a characteristic “fishy smell” that increases after sexual intercourse. This condition is generally not sexually transmitted.
Vaginal candidiasis: Increased vaginal discharge, whitish, lumpy and similar to yogurt
· Trichomoniasis: The clinical manifestations are variable, characterized by bad odor, more or less abundant yellow-green vaginal discharge and vulvar irritation with intense itching and stinging.
· Chlamydia: In general, chlamydia has no symptoms, these can appear several weeks after having sex with an infected partner. In women, the characteristics of the discharge change, which usually has a strong odor and is accompanied by burning sensations when urinating.
· Gonorrhea: Most women infected with this sexually transmitted disease do not have any symptoms or are usually mild and are easily mistaken for other conditions. Some men who have gonorrhea may be asymptomatic, but common symptoms include a burning sensation when urinating, a white, yellowish, or greenish discharge from the penis, which typically appears 1 to 14 days after having sex with a person. infected.
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