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You are here : 3-RX.com > Medical Encyclopedia > Diseases and Conditions > Vaginal Yeast Infection

Vaginal Yeast Infection

Alternate Names : Vulvovaginal Candidiasis

Overview, Causes, & Risk Factors | Symptoms & Signs | Diagnosis & Tests | Prevention & Expectations | Treatment & Monitoring

A vaginal yeast infection is caused by one of a group of fungal organisms known as Candida. These include Candida albicans, Candida tropicalis, Candida glabrata, and Candida parapsilosis.

What is going on in the body?

Candida organisms are normally found in the vagina in small numbers. Their number is kept in check by the normal bacteria that also live there. Certain situations can disrupt this balance and allow a vaginal yeast infection to develop.

What are the causes and risks of the infection?

Vaginal yeast infections are caused by Candida organisms. Some diseases and conditions that increase a woman's risk for vaginal yeast infection include:

  • diabetes that is poorly controlled
  • HIV infection
  • immuodeficiency disorders, which weaken the woman's response to infection
  • menopause
  • pregnancy
  • Other factors that increase the risk for a vaginal yeast infection include:

  • a diet high in sugar
  • antibiotic therapy
  • corticosteroid use
  • oral contraceptive use
  • sexual activity, which can change the acid-base balance in the vagina
  • using feminine hygiene products
  • wearing tight clothing or nylon underwear


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    Vaginal Yeast Infection: Symptoms & Signs

    Author: Eva Martin, MD
    Reviewer: Eileen McLaughlin, RN, BSN
    Date Reviewed: 05/07/01

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