How Should I Use This Medicine
This medicine is only for use in the vagina. Do not take by mouth or apply to other areas of the body. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Wash hands before and after use. Screw the applicator to the tube and squeeze the tube gently to fill the applicator. Lie on your back, part and bend your knees. Insert the applicator tip high in the vagina and push the plunger to release the gel into the vagina. Gently remove the applicator. Wash the applicator well with warm water and soap. Use at regular intervals. Finish the full course prescribed by your doctor or health care professional even if you think your condition is better. Do not stop using except on the advice of your doctor or health care professional.
Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. While this drug maybe prescribed for children as young as 12 years for selected conditions, precautions do apply.
Overdosage: If you think you have taken too much of this medicine contact a poison control center or emergency room at once.
NOTE: This medicine is only for you. Do not share this medicine with others.
How To Use Metronidazole Vaginal Gel
- Before you start the treatment, read the manufacturer’s printed information leaflet from inside the pack. The manufacturer’s leaflet will give you more information about metronidazole, and it will also explain how to use the gel and applicator.
- Use metronidazole vaginal gel exactly as your doctor tells you to. It is for use in the vagina only.
- Use one applicatorful of gel in the vagina at bedtime. A usual course of treatment lasts for five consecutive days.
- If you forget to use the gel, use it as soon as you remember. If you do not remember until the following day, use the gel as normal on your next dose . Use the gel for the correct number of days in total.
What Could Happen If I Dont Get Treated
In some cases, Bacterial Vaginosis can go away on its own. Taking this risk, however, could have serious consequences like:
- An increased chance of contracting HIV
- Delivering a baby that is underweight
- An Increased chance of contracting an STI like chlamydia or gonorrhea, or even Pelvic Inflammatory Disease
Ok, before you get freaked out about all this, remember that there are plenty of options to avoid and treat Bacterial Vaginosis. You being in charge of your own reproductive health is such a wonderful thing – do right by your vagina and see a doctor if you think you might have BV or if there is anything that seems off.
You May Like: How To Cure Yeast Infection Caused By Antibiotics
Boric Acid Suppositories For Bv
Boric acid suppositories have long been used for vaginal infections, including BV and yeast infections. It is regarded as a simple, safe home remedy for vaginal infections. It is thought that boric acid may affect the biofilms of BV-causing bacterial.
One study showed that treatment with nitroimidazole followed by 21 days of intravaginal boric acid suppositories and then, if in remission, metronidazole gel twice weekly for 16 weeks. BV cure rates at 12, 16, 28, and 36 weeks were 87%, 78%, 65%, and 50%, respectively.
Though the BV cure was not permanent for 50% of women in the trial, this study indicates that boric acid , may be useful in delaying recurrence of BV. More studies are needed to determine if ongoing use of boric acid may be helpful for BV prevention, especially for those with recurring BV.
Please note: Oral use of boric acid is toxic vaginal use only. Pregnant women should not use boric acid.
You can purchase boric acid suppositories online quite easily. As always, it is best to discuss any of these remedies with your doctor before use.
Other home remedies for BV that are less studied include: herbal suppositories , tea tree oil for BV, and hydrogen peroxide for BV.
If you are considering any BV treatment over the counter or home remedies for BV, talk to your doctor.
Scientific Evidence Of Antibiotics Effect On Your Period
Keep in mind, studies done on this subject have all been inconclusive but Ive seen this anecdotally in my work for many years.
Its also helpful to keep in mind that youre taking antibiotics because youre likely sick or have had some kind of surgery. This is very stressful for the body. When youre sick or have an surgery, you might experience a delay in ovulation and subsequently a delayed period. Your body basically considers these times unsafe to get pregnant, so you might not release an egg. I know it seems counter-intuitive, like why the hell is my body not working, but its actually doing exactly what its supposed to do. That is, not having a baby when there is potential danger.
I am certainly not telling you to avoid taking your prescription. If you simply MUST take antibiotics, I recommend chowing down on lots of fermented foods like sauerkraut, kim-chi and kefir during your course of medication, and for a few weeks afterwards.
You should also take a good probioticfor at least a month after youve taken the antibiotics. I highly highly recommend Megaspore Probiotics. This is a very well studied brand, and highly effective at repopulating the gut.
I also recommend drinking bone broth to help mitigate any gut lining damage that might occur.
Don’t Miss: Can I Buy Antibiotic Ear Drops Over The Counter
Bv And Reported Sexual Intercourse
BV arose on 126 occasions over the study period when data on reported sexual intercourse were also available 59 of these were within 4 days of reported sex. A similar proportion of BV episodes regressed within 4 days of reported sex . The logistic regression models showed little association between reported sex in the past 4 days and BV. The adjusted odds ratio for a positive BV reading when sex was reported in the last 4 days relative to no reported sex in the past 4 days was 0.98 . No significant interaction with BV group was found.
A further analysis was conducted to examine whether the frequency of sex reported in one menstrual cycle was associated with the frequency of BV in the next. Regression analysis was conducted on data aggregated by woman and cycle, using robust standard errors to take account of correlation within woman. No evidence of association was found. There was also no association between frequency of sex and frequency of BV in the same month . When the change in BV frequency from the previous month to the present one was regressed against the frequency of sex in the previous month again no association was found .
Q: How Is Bacterial Vaginosis Diagnosed
A: The classic diagnosis for BV is based on four clinical findings:
- A thin white or yellow discharge, often with an unpleasant or fishy smell
- A fishy odor when potassium hydroxide is added to vaginal secretions
- Vaginal secretions with a high pH level
- The presence of clue cells
Some providers use lab-based tests that look for enzymes made by the bacteria that cause BV. These enzyme tests work well. Some providers use a lab-based test that looks for Gardnerella vaginalis, a type of bacteria associated with BV. This type of test doesnt work as well and is less efficient because 70-80% of healthy women have some Gardnerella in their vaginas. If this test is positive, you may or may not actually have BV.
Read Also: Antibiotics Used For Uti Infection
Can Bacterial Vaginosis Be Prevented Or Avoided
You may not be able to prevent bacterial vaginosis. Your doctor may recommend using things like probiotics. Youll either take these by mouth or by placing them in your vagina. Other ways to reduce your risk:
- Use condoms. Condoms can help prevent the spread of bacterial vaginosis.
- Keep sex toys clean. Do not share sex toys with other people. Always clean them after use.
- Limit your number of sexual partners. Monogamy is the one of the best ways to prevent bacterial vaginosis.
- Do not douche. This can cause an imbalance in vaginal bacteria.
- See your doctor. If you feel you have symptoms of bacterial vaginosis, tell your doctor.
How Long Does Bacterial Vaginosis Last
After seeing your doctor and starting treatment with a prescribed medication, your symptoms will likely start improving within 2 to 3 days.
However, its important to continue taking your medication for the prescribed period of time, even if your symptoms have gone away. This will help ensure that the infection has completely cleared up, which typically takes about 7 days.
Also Check: Do You Need Antibiotics For Stomach Flu
My Personal Experience With Recurrent Bacterial Vaginosis
I was 23 and about to go on a weekend trip with my new boyfriend. I had never heard of BV, and by the fifth day of itching, burning, and discharge, I misdiagnosed myself with a yeast infection. I didnt want to wait for a doctor, so the night before my trip, I went to CVS and spent $30 on Monistat 1. I applied it before I went to bed, and the next morning, I woke up in some of the worst pain of my life. It was like being stung by 1,000 wasps. My vagina spent the weekend expelling the Monistat and ruining five pairs of cotton panties. I spent the weekend running to the bathroom every hour to apply Vagisil it barely helped.
When I got back to the city, I visited a doctor and told her about my nightmarish weekend. She told me that most of her patients have similar stories about confusing their bacterial vaginosis for a yeast infection and erroneously using Monistat. This is why its so important to see a doctor at the first sign of trouble down there. Monistat only worsened the problem, and I would have been on the road to recovery sooner had I seen a doctor right away.
My doctor put me on antibiotics, and after two days, the smell and itch faded. After four days, most of the symptoms were gone. My vagina was healthy and happy again! But not for long. Before I knew it, my BV was back with a vengeance. In fact, after the initial incident, I got BV after my period every single month for 19 months.
This article was first published in 2015 and has been updated
Management Of Sex Partners
Data from earlier clinical trials indicate that a womans response to therapy and the likelihood of relapse or recurrence are not affected by treatment of her sex partner . Therefore, routine treatment of sex partners is not recommended. However, a pilot study reported that male partner treatment of women with recurrent BV had an immediate and sustained effect on the composition of the vaginal microbiota, with an overall decrease in bacterial diversity at day 28 . Male partner treatment also had an immediate effect on the composition of the penile microbiota however, this was not as pronounced at day 28, compared with that among women. A phase 3 multicenter randomized double-blinded trial evaluating the efficacy of a 7-day oral metronidazole regimen versus placebo for treatment of male sex partners of women with recurrent BV did not find that male partner treatment reduced BV recurrence in female partners, although women whose male partners adhered to multidose metronidazole were less likely to experience treatment failure .
You May Like: Fish Aquarium Antibiotics For Humans
How Do I Avoid Getting It
There hasnt been enough research done to understand what causes the bacteria in the vagina to get out of balance. That being said, there are some ways you can reduce your risk of getting BV:
- Dont smoke cigarettes – smoking is anti-estrogenic which can cause your hormones to be out of balance, resulting in a higher risk of contracting BV.
- Dont use a douche – your vagina is self-cleaning and using douches can throw your pH levels out of balance, which can increase your risk of getting BV
- Limit your number of sexual partners – Hey, Ill never tell anyone how many people they should have sex with. You do you. But when it comes to BV, its been shown that having more than one sexual partner can up your risk. If you are having sex with multiple people, be sure to use protection and get tested for STIs at least once every 6 months.
Check If You Have Bacterial Vaginosis
The most common symptom of bacterial vaginosis is unusual vaginal discharge that has a strong fishy smell, particularly after sex.
You may notice a change to the colour and consistency of your discharge, such as becoming greyish-white and thin and watery.
But 50% of women with bacterial vaginosis do not have any symptoms.
Bacterial vaginosis does not usually cause any soreness or itching.
If you’re unsure it’s BV, check for other causes of unusual vaginal discharge.
Also Check: What Antibiotic Is Used To Treat E Coli
When Should I Get Treatment For Bacterial Vaginosis
The body is often very good at getting back its own balance. The disruption in the balance of vaginal germs that causes BV may correct naturally, with time. So, if you have no symptoms or only mild symptoms, you may not need any treatment, particularly if you take some of the general healthy steps above?
You normally need treatment for BV if it is causing symptoms, or if the characteristic smell is noticeable to you. If you are pregnant, trying to become pregnant, or about to have a gynaecological procedure then you may be advised to get treatment for BV.
PregnancyIf you are pregnant and you are found to have BV then you will usually be offered antibiotic treatment with oral metronidazole .
If you are trying to conceive and you think you may have BV, it is a good idea to try to eradicate the BV through natural methods or treatment prior to conceiving. If you have symptoms then you should discuss having antibiotic treatment with your doctor.
Termination of pregnancyIf you are found to have BV and are undergoing a termination of pregnancy, treatment with antibiotics may be advised even if you do not have any symptoms. This is because there is otherwise a risk of BV causing infection of the womb or pelvis after the procedure. This could lead to later fertility problems.
How Bv Is Spread
Although it is not clear how BV is transmitted, it is more common in women who are sexually active. It sometimes develops soon after intercourse with a new partner. Women who have female sexual partners may be at higher risk than women who have sex with only male partners. Research has not conclusively found a link between BV and specific sexual practices or acts. However, recent evidence supports the use of condoms to reduce the risk of this infection.
Recommended Reading: Can I Treat A Bladder Infection Without Antibiotics
Medical Treatment For Bacterial Vaginosis
The most common treatmentand one I have intimate, first-hand knowledge of thanks to years of recurrencesis metronidazole. Your doctor will perform a vaginal wet mount and, if you do have BV, give you 7 days worth of metallic tasting, chalky pills to take every 12 hours, not to be mixed with alcohol. For many women, these pills do the trick and they can go on with their lives.
But then, there are the rest of us. According to the Mayo Clinic, even after treatment, BV is likely to recur within 3-12 months. Doctors can prescribe a more rigorous round of metronidazole in a gel form, administered directly into the vagina over the course of two weeks to six months, depending on the doctors recommendation.
For me, neither worked. And I dealt with BV coming back every 68 weeks for almost a decade. It was a vicious cycle of treatment that wiped out all bacteria, followed by an occasional yeast infection which was then treated, only to come back to the bad bacteria over-multiplying once again because my body was never given the chance to let the good bacteria flourish. And while its up to you and your doctor whether you take the antibiotics, I have come to realize that there are other things I can do to make sure that the bacterial vaginosis stays away once the antibiotics have done their job.
Recommended Reading: What Probiotics Should I Take While Taking Antibiotics
Are Vaginal Acetic Acid Treatments An Effective Treatment For Bacterial Vaginosis
Treatment with acetic acid gels aims to keep the vaginal pH at less than 4.5, to encourage lactobacilli to grow, and to discourage anaerobic bacteria from growing. Some studies have suggested that long-term use of vaginal acidifiers of this type reduces recurrences of BV. However, other studies suggest that this treatment, whilst harmless, is not effective.
Recommended Reading: How To Order Antibiotics Without A Prescription
Can Bv Come Back After Medication
According to research from 2018, a person may develop BV again after a few weeks. About experience symptoms again after 1 year of getting the first infection.
In these cases, a doctor may recommend a different treatment plan.
This research also states that because antibiotics affect all vaginal bacteria, using antibiotics to treat BV may lead to a vaginal yeast infection. This occurs in about of those who take clindamycin or metronidazole.
Symptoms of a yeast infection include lumpy, white vaginal discharge or vaginal itching and redness.
Is Bv A Sexually Transmitted Disease
BV is not a sexually transmitted infection, according to Dean. However, having sex with a new partner, or multiple partners, may increase your risk for BV. Sex sometimes leads to BV if your partners natural genital chemistry changes the balance of bacteria in your vagina and causes the bacteria associated with BV to grow. If you have BV, your sexual partner with a penis generally does not need treatment for BV. BV may spread between partners with vaginas, explains Dean. Although BV is not an STI, having BV increases your chances of becoming infected with an STI, including HIV, if you are exposed to one. If you are HIV positive, untreated BV increases your chances of passing HIV along to your sex partners.
Don’t Miss: Can You Get Antibiotics From Urgent Care