What is leukorrhea and pelvic inflammatory disease?
Leukorrhea is excessive vaginal discharge. There can be many reasons for leukorrhea. Pelvic inflammatory disease is one of them. It means infection of the reproductive organs of a woman. It happens when the germs travel up through the vagina, cervix and uterus and then spread to the fallopian tubes, ovaries, and surrounding tissues in the pelvis. Most common serious infection is the infection of fallopian tubes that is called salpingitis.
Causes of pelvic inflammatory disease
Most of the cases are transmitted through sexual intercourse with an infected person, minor procedures like insertion of intrauterine device, miscarriage or after delivery.
Symptoms of pelvic inflammatory disease
Some patients may feel any symptoms but others have symptoms. In acute PID, fever and severe abdominal pain are very common. In chronic PID, lower back and mild lower abdominal pain are ommon occurrence. In both acute and chronic PID, intercourse is usually painful. There may be menstrual problems with smelly vaginal discharge and painful urination.
Risks of PID
PID can lead to scarring of reproductive system and subsequently infertility and ectopic pregnancies. Sometimes it can cause a pelvic abscess or even the peritonitis(infection of abdominal cavity).
How it can be prevented?
Safe sex is important. Use barrier contraceptives with new partner. Get your partner or husband tested and treated for any STI. It is your responsibility to inform your partner that you have PID.
What is the treatment?
A course of antibiotic is given by mouth. It is advised to avoid intercourse until the infection is cleared. It may take 2 to 4 weeks. If someone has got IUD, it should be removed.
If you suffer from any symptoms related to PID or leukorrhea, visit Dr Sadaf Sarwar at Australian Polyclinic or your nearest physician.
Dr Sadaf Sarwar
MBBS (King Edward Medical College),
Fellow Royal Australian College of General Practitioner (FRACGP, Australia)
Ex-Assistant Professor, The University of Lahore, Pakistan
Consultant General and Family Physician