Many women experience occasional vaginal symptoms that resolve on their own. Hormones, a new laundry detergent, or an allergic reaction can trigger itching and irritation. The vaginal multiflora can change over time, and you may experience symptoms like discharge or odor. Minor problems usually resolve independently or with the removal of the irritant. If symptoms do not go away, you may need to see a vulvovaginal doctor.
What is a Vulvovaginal Doctor?
Most gynecologists study general gynecology and obstetrics, but a vulvovaginal doctor has specialized exclusively in conditions of the vulva and vagina. Specialists like those at Fowler GYN International have decades of experience and have established themselves as experts. The vulva and vestibule (vaginal entrance) have sensitive, easily irritated skin, and vulvovaginal doctors have particular expertise in treating these conditions.
Top 3 Signs That it’s Time to See a Vulvovaginal Doctor
How do you know when you need to see a specialist? You should make an appointment with a vulvovaginal doctor if:
Your Symptoms Do Not Go Away
A minor vaginal condition will often go away by itself. If your symptoms do not stop or go away but keep coming back, you may need the assistance of a specialist. Symptoms that do not resolve independently can indicate an imbalance in the vaginal microflora.
Other Doctors Have Not Found a Cause
Most gynecologists only test for a few of the more than thirty microorganisms that live in the vagina. A vulvovaginal specialist has the testing equipment and experience to diagnose conditions that have eluded other doctors.
Symptoms Affect Your Quality of Life
If you feel like you cannot fully enjoy life because of your symptoms, you should see a specialist as soon as possible. You do not have to live with symptoms that leave you frustrated and in pain. Your condition can be treated, and you can get your life back.
What Does a Vulvovaginal Doctor Treat?
Many women experience recurrent vaginal symptoms when they have altered vagina microflora (AVMF). In a healthy vagina, beneficial bacteria maintain the proper acidic pH and keep other components of the microflora from getting out of control. Anything that affects the level of the good bacteria can allow other bacteria and yeasts to increase.
When these problematic bacteria become overactive, they turn the vaginal secretions into an irritant that triggers burning, itching, and pain in the vulva and vaginal opening. Restoring a healthy vaginal microflora requires a customized treatment protocol that avoids irritants and treats the underlying causes of the microflora changes.
Why Choose a Vulvovaginal Doctor?
Many gynecologists will only see patients with recurrent, painful vaginal symptoms a few times a year. The standard testing they use will not diagnose most chronic types of AVMF. Most importantly, most doctors do not understand what causes imbalances in the microflora, so they have no strategy for treating them. A vulvovaginal doctor has the knowledge and advanced testing capabilities to treat your condition.
Take the Next Step
The experts in vaginal health at Fowler GYN International (FGI) Phoenix, AZ, specialize in the treatment of vulvovaginal conditions. The team at FGI is led by Dr. R. Stuart Fowler. Dr. Fowler is an Emeritus Mayo Clinic board-certified gynecologist.
You can reach FGI at https://www.fowlergyninternational.com/, or by calling (480) 420-4001.