Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.
Dr. Charles "Pat" Davis, MD, PhD, is a board certified Emergency Medicine doctor who currently practices as a consultant and staff member for hospitals. He has a PhD in Microbiology (UT at Austin), and the MD (Univ. Texas Medical Branch, Galveston). He is a Clinical Professor (retired) in the Division of Emergency Medicine, UT Health Science Center at San Antonio, and has been the Chief of Emergency Medicine at UT Medical Branch and at UTHSCSA with over 250 publications.
Most vaginal yeast infections are
caused by the organism Candida albicans.
Yeast infections are very common and
affect up to 75% of women at some point in their lifetime.
The main symptom of a vaginal yeast infection is
itching, but burning, discharge, and
pain with urination or intercourse
can also occur.
Treatment involves topical or oral
It is possible for a woman to transmit
a yeast infection to a male sex partner, even though yeast infection is not
considered to be a true sexually-transmitted disease because it can occur in
women who are not sexually active.
Treatment of yeast infection in men,
like in women, involves antifungal medications.
Keeping the vaginal area dry and
avoiding irritating chemicals can help prevent yeast infections in women.
Consuming foods with probiotics may also help.
What is a vaginal yeast infection?
A vaginal yeast infection is an infection caused by yeast (a type of
fungus). Vaginal yeast infection is sometimes referred to as
Candidal vaginitis, or Candidal vulvovaginitis. The scientific name for the
yeast that causes vaginitis is Candida. Over 90% of vaginal yeast infections are
caused by the species known as Candida albicans. Other Candida species make up
the remainder of yeast infections.
Candida species can be present in healthy women in the vagina without causing
any symptoms. In fact, it is estimated that 20% to 50% of women have Candida already
present in the vagina. For an infection to occur, the normal balance of yeast
and bacteria is disturbed, allowing overgrowth of the yeast. While yeast can be
spread by sexual contact, vaginal yeast infection is not considered to be a
sexually-transmitted disease because it can also occur in women who are not
sexually active, due to the fact that yeast can be present in the vagina of
Vaginal yeast infections are very common, affecting up to 75% of women at
some point in life.
What are vulvitis and vaginal yeast infection symptoms and signs?
Symptoms of yeast infection are similar to those of other causes of vaginitis (inflammation or irritation of the vaginal canal), including Trichomonas infection and bacterial vaginosis. Itching, which can be severe, is a common symptom. Burning and irritation usually accompany the itching. Pain during sexual intercourse may be present as well as pain or burning with urination. A vaginal discharge is often present. With a yeast infection, the discharge is most often described as whitish-gray, thick, and having a consistency similar to cottage cheese. There may be redness, swelling, irritation, and itching of the vulva in addition to the vaginal symptoms.