Vaginal Discharge – What Is Considered Abnormal?
Unlike their male counterparts, it is quite normal for women to have vaginal discharge. There is no standard amount of discharge, as some have it daily, whereas others experience it once in a while. It can also be light and intermittent, or heavy and continuous.
In general, healthy vaginal discharge is one that is clear or whitish, may have a slight odour that is not strong smelling, and may even leave a yellow stain on the underwear. If you are experience this, you should not be worried.
Abnormal Vaginal Discharge
The concern comes when there is abnormal vaginal discharge. This type of discharge can either be clear and watery, thick and white, or even have other colour changes such as yellow, pink, red or even green.
This discharge can also accompany other symptoms like foul or fishy smell, vaginal pain during sex, itching and general discomfort. The consistency of the discharge can also turn thicker and more opaque as well.
If you are experiencing this abnormal form of discharge, you should know that it can be caused by an infection, whether hygiene-related or STI-related.
Causes of Abnormal Vaginal Discharge
Causes of abnormal vaginal discharge can fall into 2 categories: Hygiene-related or STI-related.
Causes of hygiene-related vaginal discharge include Yeast, Monilla, Candida, group B streptococcus, Gardnerella (also known as bacteria vaginosis).
Causes of STI-related vaginal discharge are chlamydia, gonorrhoea, trichomonas, mycoplasma hominis, ureaplasma urealyticum or other vaginal bacteria. Symptoms of these infections can appear 3 days after receptive vaginal intercourse or receptive oral sex. Conditions such as Chlamydia can remain asymptomatic in 7 out of 10 women.
When left untreated, the infections from STI -related vaginal discharge can cause long term problems. Infertility, organ damage and pelvic inflammatory disease are just some of the complications that can arise from untreated STIs.
Fortunately, all this is easily preventable with a simple, confidential and fuss-free DTAP Express vaginal STD swab. Rapid results for common STIs like chlamydia and gonorrhoea allow for quick peace of mind and expedited treatment for you and your partner.
STD Testing For Abnormalities
If you decide on getting the DTAP Express Full Vaginal STD swab, you will be able to test for both STI and hygiene related causes of vaginal. In either case, there is treatment available that can help to safely and effectively resolve the infection. A repeat swab test is also advised 2 weeks after the end of treatment to document treatment success.
In rare instances, some ladies experience repeated abnormal discharge when nearing their periods, or even abnormal discharge after sex even when both partners have been tested clear for STIs. In these situations, the results after the swab can then be discussed with our DTAP clinic doctors to further investigate the causes of these repeated symptoms. Our DTAP Clinics at DUO, Robertson and Holland Village have doctors who regularly encounter and treat women’s health conditions like repeated abnormal vaginal discharge.
Quick, confidential and fuss-free testing in the comfort and privacy of our DTAP Express clinic, designed around the comfort and needs of patients, allow for rapid results and expedited treatment.
Carla Re et. l., 2019 J. Int STD & Aids