Pattern of Vaginal Discharge and Associated Demographic Characteristics among Female Patients Seen at a Gynaecology Clinic in Northern Nigeria


Background: Vaginal discharge is a common gynecological symptom seen among women provoking anxiety and fear of sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Methods: This was a hospital based retrospective study done from November 2008 to March 2013. Records of 969 patients presenting to the gynaecology clinic with symptoms of “vaginal discharge” were retrieved and relevant data on demographics, discharge characteristics and frequency, associated risk factors and symptoms, as well as investigations were retrieved. Data were analyzed using the statistical package for social sciences (SPSS) software, version 15. Relevant descriptive and bivariate analysis was done. Level of p < 0.05 was considered statistically significant. Results: Majority of the patients (54.9%) were aged between 21 and 30 years, and the mean age was 26.7 ± 7.9. More than half (53.3%) were of the Hausa ethnic group, Muslims (82.6%) and housewives (51.9%). In terms of colour only 28.2% was characterized; more commonly as whitish (16.9%) or milky (7.7%). About 560 patients (57.8%) had additional associated symptoms. The commonest organism cultured was Candida species in 252 patients (26%), followed by Staphylococcus aureus (15.6%) and Streptococcus species (0.8%). When compared, those with additional symptoms were more likely to present with whitish vaginal discharge, candidiasis and recurrence of symptoms (p < 0.05), than those who had no additional symptoms. Conclusions: Vaginal discharge is a common symptom among women but may not always be pathological. Candidiasis was the commonest infectious cause in this population though the symptom needs to be properly characterized, and investigated when required.

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Amina, M. , Zainab, M. , Amina, A. , Augustine, O. and Adebiyi, A. (2015) Pattern of Vaginal Discharge and Associated Demographic Characteristics among Female Patients Seen at a Gynaecology Clinic in Northern Nigeria. Open Access Library Journal, 2, 1-8. doi: 10.4236/oalib.1102231.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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