CAM UseInfectionPre, Pro, Synbiotics

CAM use among women with vaginitis

Researchers in the US and Israel describe the use of CAM in women with chronic vaginitis and the epidemiologic factors associated with these treatments.

First, the details.

  • 381 women with chronic vaginitis completed a questionnaire about past diagnoses and treatments.
  • Information regarding demographics, medical and social history, perceived mental and emotional stress, and current symptoms was collected.
  • All patients underwent a standard physical examination and laboratory testing and were assigned a specific diagnosis.

And, the results.

  • 65% used complementary alternative medicines.
  • The most common treatments were yogurt and acidophilus pills.
  • Compared with nonusers, CAM users were significantly more likely to have the following characteristics.
    • Younger
    • Not African American
    • Increased measures of perceived stress
    • Report that their symptoms interfered with work and their social lives.
    • Had seen more doctors
    • More likely to report a history of vulvovaginal candidiasis (vaginal thrush) or bacterial vaginosis (the most common cause of vaginal infection).
  • A current diagnosis of vulvovaginal candidiasis was not associated with alternative medicine use.

The bottom line?

The authors concluded, ā€œComplementary alternative medicine use is common in women with chronic vaginitis, particularly in those who are young, have more disruptive symptoms, and report greater stress.ā€

The researchers found that acidophilus was the most common treatment. Here and here are two summaries of studies with the probiotic, L acidophilus.

4/3/11 21:04 JR

Hi, Iā€™m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.