Yeast Infection in Women and Men (cont.)

Medical Author:
Medical Editor:

In this Article

What are the signs and symptoms of a vaginal yeast infection?

Symptoms can include a vaginal discharge that is typically thick and whitish-gray in color. The discharge has been described as having a cottage-cheese-like consistency.

Other symptoms of a vaginal yeast infection include:

  • An intense itching of the vaginal or genital area
  • Irritation and burning
  • Pain during sexual intercourse
  • Pain or burning during urination
  • Soreness of the vagina or vulva in women

What may increase my risk of getting a vaginal yeast infection?

Women who have conditions that result in decreased immune function are more likely than others to develop yeast infections. These include women with cancer or receiving cancer chemotherapy, those with diabetes, and women taking steroid medications. Pregnant women and women taking oral contraceptives are also at increased risk.

Taking antibiotics for any reason can alter the normal bacterial populations in the vagina and predispose to the overgrowth of yeast.

You can also take steps to reduce moisture in the genital area and reduce the chances of developing a yeast infection. Wearing cotton underwear or underwear with a cotton crotch, wearing loose-fitting pants, and avoiding prolonged wearing of wet workout gear or bathing suits are all measures that can help control moisture.

How is a vaginal yeast infection diagnosed?

Even though the signs and symptoms of yeast infection may point to the cause, vaginal itching and discharge can be caused by other conditions including bacterial vaginosis and Trichomonas infections. To most accurately make the diagnosis, a sample of the discharge is tested in the laboratory, either by culture or by direct examination under a microscope, to identify the yeast organisms and to help rule out other causes such as bacterial vaginosis or sexually-transmitted pathogens.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 12/4/2014

Patient Comments

Viewers share their comments

Vaginal Yeast Infection - Home Remedies Question: What home remedies have you found effective in soothing a vaginal yeast infection?
Vaginal Yeast Infection - OTC Medications Question: What OTC medications have you found effective in treating a vaginal yeast infection?
Vaginal Yeast Infection - Prescription Medications Question: What prescription medications were effective in treating your vaginal yeast infection?
Yeast Infection - Symptoms Question: Women: What were your symptoms associated with a yeast infection?
Yeast Infection - Prevention Question: What prevention measures do you use to avoid getting a yeast infection?
Yeast Infection - Causes Question: For women: what do you believe was the cause of your yeast infection?
Yeast Infection - Causes In Men Question: For men: Did you have a yeast infection? If so, what was the cause?