Written by : Dr.M.D.Mazumdar, MD
Previous: Causes of Vaginal Itching without Discharge
Treatment of vaginal itching starts with diagnosis of the cause of the itching. A thorough examination will identify causes like lichen sclerosis, lichen simplex, eczema or psoriasis.
Lice and scabies can also be diagnosed by physical examination.
Swabs may be necessary for diagnosis of a bacterial or fungal infection or menopausal changes in the vagina. Patch tests are necessary to see if any contact allergy is present.
A skin biopsy will help in cases where there is itching with ulcers, sores, growths or depigmented areas to identify leukoplakia or skin cancers.
Treatment is as per the cause.
The standard treatment is to prescribe a course of estrogen cream to be applied thice daily for a week and then gradually tapered off in the next 2-3 weeks. Simultaneous treatment of fungal infections can be carried out by using vaginal tablets or creams of antifungal substances like miconazole or clotrimazole. Oral estrogen tablets are usually not necessary unless the itching is very severe, or, if the itching is not controlled by vaginal cream application.
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Anti-lice medicines like Nix or Elmite or Permethrin 1% should be used to remove lice from pubic hair. Nix and Elmite are contraindicated in pregnant and breastfeeding women.
Scabies is treated by 5% permethrin cream or lotion.
Other supplementary vitamins and minerals that increase the resistance of the body to infections of various types are Vitamin C 500 mg tablets taken once daily, Acidophilus tablets to stimulate growth of healthy lactobacilli in the vagina and to increase the acidity of the vagina and prevent infections and Zinc tablets.
Some general measures are beneficial in all cases of vaginal itching:
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