Women's health

Bacterial Vaginosis

Bacterial vaginosis (BV) is a common cause of unusual vaginal discharge. BV is not a sexually transmitted infection (STI), but it can increase your risk of getting an STI such as chlamydia. The most...


Bacterial vaginosis is caused by a change in the natural balance of bacteria in your vagina.

You’re more likely to get it if:

  • You have an IUD (contraception device)
  • You’re sexually active (but women who have not had sex can also get BV)
  • You have had a change of partner
  • You used perfumed products in or around your vagina


Bacterial vaginosis is usually treated with antibiotic tablets or gels or creams.

If you have a same-sex partner, they may also need treatment.

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