Diagnose Bacterial Vaginosis

  • Oligonucleotide Probes: Genetic substances associated with vaginosis are identified by performing this test. This test is fairly accurate. However for some unknown reason this test is not regularly available in majority of health check labs.
  • Vaginal pH: The normal pH level of a healthy vagina is normally in the range of 3.8 to 4.5. In case the pH level rises above 4.5 it is a sign of vaginosis. Vaginal discharge sample can be examined to check the pH levels and identify the infection.
  • Gram Strain: During this test a kind of special dye is applied to a microscope slide in which the vaginal discharge sample is to be examined. This dye causes certain types of bacteria like Gram-positive to turn a shade of purple. Other types of bacteria like the Gram-negative ones turn pink when the dye is used. The presence of Gram negative bacteria indicates that a woman is infected with bacterial.
  • Wet Mount: This is another test during which vaginosis is identified by placing a sample of vaginal discharge mixed with normal salt solution on a microscope slide. The presence of white blood cells in the sample is an indication of bacteria and infection. At the time of the test the lab technicians will also look for unusual cells known as clue cells. These cells are a sure shot indicator of bacterial vaginosis.
  • Whiff Test: During this test to a sample of vaginal discharge, drops of potassium hydroxide solution is mixed. If it produces a strong fishy odor it is a clear sign of bacterial vaginosis.

In summary, to diagnose bacterial vaginosis there are a variety of tests available. When tests results indicate the presence of clue cells, an enhanced level of vaginal pH, and a positive whiff test it can be safely concluded that a woman is suffering from bacterial vaginosis. Diagnosis of vaginosis is essential because some of its symptoms like the excessive vaginal discharge can be caused due to other vaginal infections like the yeast infection.