Dear Aunt Vadge,
Pain, yellow discharge & spotting. Gynecologist diagnosed Doderlein’s Cytolytic Vaginosis & prescribed [antibiotic] Dalacin. No improvement in 2 weeks, so what else can be done?
Hi there Unimproved,
Doderlein’s cytolytic vaginosis is also called lactobacillus overgrowth syndrome, which is the unimpeded overgrowth of lactobacilli in the vagina. While normally lactobacilli are heralded as the saviours of the vagina, they too are a bacteria that can grow out of control if the checks and balances put in place to manage them are interrupted.
This happens typically when there is an increase in glycogen, often stimulated by oestrogen in the body. Glycogen feeds lactobacilli, and lactobacilli can actually start to damage and kill the vaginal cells. It is important to stop this and prevent further damage to your vagina.
You mention you were prescribed Dalacin, which is an antibiotic used to kill what are known as gram-positive bacteria, which lactobacilli are. Dalacin is usually only prescribed for serious infections like staph and strep, however your doctor would have anticipated this would help, though it has not – this may indicate that you were misdiagnosed or have another underlying condition, so you must go back to your doctor to be re-examined.
Your physician must know that this treatment has been ineffective – Dalacin is a strong antibiotic, and is supposed to kill lactobacilli, so if it hasn’t improved your symptoms, please see your doctor before trying the douche below. (The lactobacilli should be dead.)
There is a simple solution usually prescribed which can be found below and at the lactobacilli overgrowth syndrome page involving a very simple and cheap douche to change the pH (acidity) of the vagina, to discourage the overgrowth.
Anticipating that your doctor has ruled out every other cause of pain, spotting and yellow discharge, this is the recommended treatment of this condition. Your personal circumstances are important, so for example if you are diabetic, you may need to find a way to regularly prevent overgrowth of lactobacilli, since higher blood sugar is a feature of diabetes, adding to the glycogen in the vagina, and therefore an overgrowth of lactobacilli.
Please make sure that every possible avenue has been explored with your physician, since spotting, yellow discharge and pain can be caused by some serious diseases. If you are sure, try the douche below and follow the instructions and see how you go.
Treating cytolytic vaginosis
Reducing lactobacilli numbers can be done by elevating the vaginal pH using a sodium bicarbonate douching solution or suppository. This should help to restore the natural balance after three weeks, however if symptoms worsen, stay the same or become different, cease treatment and seek re-evaluation.
Cytolytic vaginosis baking soda douche mixture
- 1-2 tablespoons of baking soda (sodium bicarbonate)
- 4 cups of warm water
Douche twice-weekly for one week on, one week off, for three weeks.
Cytolytic vaginosis suppository mixture
- Empty gelatin (vege) capsules
- Fill with baking soda
Insert one capsule deep into the vagina twice a week for one week on, one week off, for three weeks.
Please let us know how you go!