In a short piece from page 110 of the May 2003 Glamour, women are advised to ask their gynecologist to test for bacterial vaginosis (BV) with every visit. Half the women with BV don’t have symptoms. Left untreated it can lead to pelvic inflammatory disease and cause premature delivery if you’re pregnant. The article recommended the POCkit BV quadro, an in-office test covered by most insurance plans that has a 98 percent accuracy rate.
(my comments below)
BV is treatable with a short dose of antibiotics. But you can never be immune, which is why it’s important to be tested every time you go in for an exam.
BV is not a disease, per se; it’s an imbalance in the natural yeast and bacteria within the vagina. Sexual activity is generally blamed for the infections, but some women are more prone to these imbalances than others. Douching can also cause BV (by creating an imbalance within the vagina), and there are other possible causes that aren’t yet pinpointed.