Wednesday, 19 February 2014

What Does Atrophic Vaginitis Mean?

Atrophic Vaginitis refers to the redness, dryness or itching of the vagina. Usually, about 75% women may suffer from it after  menopause. Many women also suffer from it after they deliver a baby or during breast feeding. Also, many women who do not use any topical therapy may have vaginal atrophy up to an extent.

Women suffering from it have a greater chance of suffering from vaginal infections. As the acidic environment changes, thriving becomes easy for yeast, bacteria or other organisms in this environment. It may also increase the risk genitourinary atrophy.

The causes of atrophic vaginitis may vary according to the health of the female. The most common causes are the decrease in estrogen is the most commonly seen causes. It naturally happens in the perimenopause and its incidence increase during the post menopause. The ovaries produce estrogen until the body hits menopause, which is around fifty five years of age. This estrogen helps in vaginal secretions and maintaining the health of the skin.

Other causes may include the following:

  • Radiation therapy
  • Chemotherapy
  • Rigorous exercise
  • Ovary removal
  • Lactation
  • Post delivery 
  • Depression or stress
  • Certain medications are meant to reduce the estrogen levels in the body. It may be to treat diseases including breast cancer, infertility or endometriosis. 
Other factors which may cause further problems may be any of the following:
  • Lotion
  • Tampons
  • Soaps
  • Smoking
  • Perfumes
  • Laundry detergents
Although the number of women suffering from it is high, many still do not seek medical advice because some think it is a taboo while others think it is a natural occurrence. A right medical advice and proper treatment may help in relieving the symptoms of vaginal atrophy such as:
  • Extreme pain during sexual intercourse
  • Irritation while wearing tight clothes
  • Vaginal dryness
  • Urinary tract infections
  • Thin or pale looking vagina
Before someone self-diagnoses and self prescribes a treatment, it is better to seek medical help. It is important to determine whether the problem is because of less estrogen, or it is another infection or an irritant.

If the doctor suggests it to be atrophic vaginitis, Premarin Vaginal Cream (conjugated estrogens) may be prescribed. One should inform the doctor about any medical history before the using topical estrogens. To avoid any side effects, it should be used only if prescribed by a registered physician.

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