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What Should I Do If Antibiotics Did Not Clear Up My Bacterial Vaginosis?

August 23, 2016

Unfortunately, this is a common problem. Around a third of women who take antibiotic treatment for bacterial vaginosis (BV) find that the problem recurs within the next two to three months. Some strains of BV organisms may have resistance to some antibiotics.

You should return to your healthcare provider and describe the problems you are having. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advises clinicians on a variety of treatment strategies which can be tried if symptoms recur.

Simply trying another course of the antibiotics you used the first time may be appropriate. Be sure to take all doses of the antibiotic as prescribed and complete the full course -- even if your symptoms seem to go away.

Alternatively, your healthcare provider may suggest a course of a different antibiotic, as an alternative to the one you used the first time. You could try antibiotics in a different form, for example as a vaginal gel rather than tablets.

For very persistent cases, the CDC suggests some more intensive regimens -- for example, using a vaginal antibiotic gel twice a week for six months, or taking an antibiotic tablet as well as an anti fungal tablet once a month, on an ongoing basis.

More on Bacterial Vaginosis at

To find out more about bacterial vaginosis, we recommend the following articles:

In addition, our Q&A experts sometimes address questions about bacterial vaginosis in our "Ask the Experts" forums. Here are some of those questions and our experts' responses:

Elsewhere on the Web

For additional reliable information on this topic, we recommend the following pages on other websites:

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