Vaginal discharge is very natural and desirable because it helps to keep the vagina healthy and lubricated. However, since it’s also possible to have an abnormal discharge it’s helpful to know what types of vaginal discharge are normal.
What is Vaginal Discharge?
Vaginal discharge is the fluid secreted from glands of the cervix and transulation of fluid across the vaginal mucosal lining. The vaginal discharge contains newly exfoliated squamous cells from the wall of the vagina which represents an integral part of the vaginal nutrient base. The fluid part of the discharge comes from liquids that pass through the vaginal mucosa from the blood vessels into the vagina and excretions from glands on the surface of the cervix (click here to learn more).
What Types of Vaginal Discharge Are Normal?
Normal vaginal discharge can range in color from clear to milky white. It is usually watery in consistency but can also be slightly thicker. Vaginal discharge that is clear and stretchy or clear and watery is considered normal. Normal discharge is usually odorless but can also have a very subtle scent which is not unpleasant. The amount of vaginal discharge produced each day is between 1 to 4 milliliters.
However, while there are general guidelines regarding normal vaginal discharge there will also be some variations. The amount and consistency of vaginal discharge may also change during the menstrual cycle and level of hydration. Every woman should pay attention to their vaginal discharge and recognize what’s normal for them.
Recognizing abnormal vaginal discharge
If there is any change in the color, odor, or consistency of your vaginal discharge, or if there is an increase in volume or frequency, it could indicate a problem such as an infection or change in quality of the vaginal mucosa. Also, if the change in discharge is accompanied by other symptoms such as vaginal itching, burning, soreness, irritation, or a foul odor, it may be time to check with your doctor.
If you are experiencing an abnormal vaginal discharge and doctors haven’t been able to diagnose the cause, contact Fowler GYN International, Phoenix, AZ, for a consultation. They have developed advanced diagnostic techniques for the evaluation of abnormal vaginal discharge. It was established by former Mayo physician, board certified Dr. R. Stuart Fowler.
You can reach Dr. Fowler at www.fowlergyninternational.com, or by calling (480) 420-4001.