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Gynecol Obstet Invest. 2012;73(3):195-200. doi: 10.1159/000332396. Epub 2012 Feb 1.

Does vaginal irrigation with saline solution in women with infectious vaginitis contribute to the clinical and microbiological results of antibiotic therapy?

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Fatih University School of Medicine, Ankara, Turkey.



To compare the clinical and microbiological results between patients with infectious vaginitis receiving vaginal irrigation with saline or no irrigation before standard antibiotic therapy.


Women with vaginitis (n = 109) were randomized to receive vaginal irrigation with saline or no irrigation before standard antibiotic therapy. The vaginal symptoms perceived by subjects and clinical findings were assessed with a standardized scale during four follow-up visits, and Gram stain Nugent scores and vaginal fluid cultures were analyzed at each visit.


Vaginal discharge (z = 7.159; p < 0.001), pruritus (z = 5.169; p < 0.001), itching (z = 2.969; p < 0.003) and odor scores (z = 2.303; p < 0.021) were significantly reduced in the study group compared to the control group between the first visit and 3-5 days after irrigation, before the start of antibiotic therapy. The second and third visits (15 and 30-45 days after antibiotic therapy) showed that the patients' symptoms and amounts of visible vaginal discharge did not differ between the two groups. Moreover, the microbiological cures of patients in each group did not differ at these visits (z = 0.447; p = 0.655).


Vaginal irrigation with saline significantly reduces self-reported symptoms in the short term but has no effect on long-term clinical and laboratory results in women with infectious vaginitis.

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