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Experts Corner

Perinatal Pathology

Bacterial Vaginosis Treatment During Pregnancy
By Carolyn M. Salafia, MD

Carolyn Salafia, MDQ. I was diagnosed with bacterial vaginosis at 7 1/2 weeks gestation. I was given metronidazole and cleocin creams to treat it. However when I researched these drugs I found that they are not reccomended for use during the first trimester. Now, however, from what I read, bacterial vaginosis can cause miscarriage. I was going to hold off until 12 weeks to treat the infection to be safe but now I am not sure what to do. Is it safer to hold off treatment or treat the infection now even though I am only in my first trimester?

A. If your doctor gives you medications and you become concerned that the medication is harmful, I frankly think the only fair thing to do is to go back to the doctor who advised you to take medication--with the information you have collected--and ask them to reconcile your concerns.

I know many many docs who treat BV in many many pregnancies because in some women there is an association of BV and early delivery, which can be lethal to the baby. I am not intending to scare you, but perhaps I am a little, because it concerns me to hear women getting medications for diagnoses that can be potentially serious, and then considering an independent decision to not take the medication as instructed!!! I would strongly and completely urge/suggest/would drive you there myself if I knew where you lived (you get the idea). Get back to your doctor, or if you don't have confidence in them as caregivers, find a second opinion and address this issue. Taking medications other than as prescribed without the knowledge of the caregiver is not fair to YOU or to the person trying to give you care. THIS CAN ONLY BE FAIRLY ADDRESSED BY THE PERSON WHO PRESCRIBED THE MEDS. If you don't trust them, then find someone you choose to take their place as your responsible caregiver. I am sorry if this seems abrupt, but you worried me with this approach

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