The female reproductive system is a complex network of various organs. While many women occasionally experience gynecological problems, many of them avoid seeing a doctor for treatment due to embarrassment – or due to a lack of understanding of what the problem could lead to.
To maintain optimum sexual health, you should know the common diseases that can strike your reproductive tract. By knowing their signs and symptoms, you can seek help early and avoid unnecessary suffering and potential complications.
Yeast and Bacterial Infections
The vagina has a self-cleaning mechanism that naturally keeps it clear of debris without external intervention. A part of this mechanism is the bacterial population maintained by the body on the vaginal surface. These bacteria are mostly lactobacilli that produce lactic acid, keeping the vagina acidic and suppressing the growth of dangerous organisms.
On occasion, though, several organisms can take over the natural microflora. occurs when excessive yeast growth occurs. When harmful bacteria overpower the lactobacilli, bacterial vaginosis occurs.
These two infections share many symptoms, including:
- Burning sensation during sex or urination
Treatment consists of medication that can be applied directly to the affected area or taken orally.
Pelvic Inflammatory Disease
The cervix naturally forms a barrier preventing invasive bacterial species in the vagina from reaching the upper reproductive tract. If the bacteria manage to breach this barrier, however, they can multiply exponentially and can cause widespread inflammation, leading to pelvic inflammatory disease (PID).
Women with PID may have no symptoms; but when it does have symptoms, it can cause general pain in the pelvis, fever, painful sex, and abnormal bleeding between menstrual cycles.
Left untreated, PID can lead to infertility and ectopic pregnancy, where the embryo implants outside of the uterus. Chronic pain can also occur.
Urinary Tract Infection
Women have relatively short urethras leading to the bladder as compared to those in men. The urethral opening is also close in proximity to the anus and vagina, which both have significant bacterial populations. If these bacteria manage to infect the urethra, they might reach the bladder and reproduce there – and spread the infection to the rest of the urinary tract.
A urinary tract infection (UTI) manifests as painful urination, a constant urge to urinate, and urine that is cloudy or tinged with blood. General signs of infection, such as chills and a high fever, can also be present.
UTIs are frequently treated with antibiotics and proper hydration to help flush out the bacteria from the urinary tract.
Polycystic Ovary Disease
Unlike the other infections and diseases listed here, polycystic ovary disease is caused by a hormonal problem. Excessive amounts of androgens, or male hormones, are associated with this condition.
Symptoms typically include irregular periods, infertility, and obesity. Treatment involves lifestyle changes to promote weight loss and medications to manage hormone levels.
Gynecologists in Syracuse, NY
Many diseases that can affect your gynecological health involve infections and hormonal imbalances. Without proper diagnosis and treatment by a skilled gynecologist, all of these common disorders can lead to lifelong consequences.
Our expert medical team at University OB/GYN Associates can help you stay on top of your gynecological health and provide treatment whenever necessary. Our doctors are committed to giving you quality care.
To schedule an appointment, call us today at (315) 464-5162 or fill out our online form. We look forward to partnering with you for a lifetime of health!