Itching is a subjectively unpleasant sensation that occurs in response to irritation of the skin or mucous membranes. For the sensation of itching, special sensitive endings of nerve cells that perceive pathological impulses are responsible. Previously, it was believed that itching appears as a result of irritation of pain receptors. However, according to researchers from the institute. J. Hopkins, this sensation arises due to a separate type of receptors. It is they that cause an unpleasant, more painful feeling in a person, leading to scratching, nervousness and discomfort. It is especially difficult for women if itching develops in the groin and vagina.
Itching in women
With a feeling of itching (on the skin, in the genital area) almost every woman has met at least once in her life. This feeling can arise at any time from early childhood to old age. However, itching in women in the groin area is a special, delicate situation. Often, embarrassment prevents you from seeking help from a doctor, especially if you suspect the presence of infections that are transmitted through sexual contact. Therefore, many resort to self-medication, improvised methods of relieving itching or taking sedative, antiallergic drugs. Sometimes this approach turns into even more problems, since the causes of itching are often not eliminated, and the symptoms are only muffled for a while.
Often, itching in women in the perineum is accompanied by redness of the skin, discharge, and constant scratching leads to wounds and secondary infection. Constant itching does not allow you to work and rest calmly, makes close relationships impossible, literally exhausts a woman, depriving her of sleep and rest. It is important to remember that a healthy woman never feels itching and discomfort, which means that it is necessary to overcome shame and consult a doctor in order to be cured. However, in order for the doctor to correctly determine why a woman experiences discomfort and itching, it is necessary to properly prepare for a visit to the doctor.
Visiting a gynecologist, how to prepare?
A gynecologist can determine the cause of itching in the vaginal and groin area, but proper preparation is needed for his visit so that the doctor can accurately navigate the causes and conduct the necessary studies.
It is not necessary to use any medications (suppositories, douches, tablets) at least 1-2 days before the visit.
It is necessary to abstain from sexual intercourse for 2 days.
For the same period, it is worth refusing to use cosmetics for the genitals (especially with antimicrobial components).
Before a visit to the doctor, it is necessary to wash with ordinary baby soap and warm water.
It is advisable not to urinate before going to the doctor for at least 2 hours.
These actions are necessary so that the doctor can conduct a full examination and evaluate an objective picture of the problem in the groin area, as well as take swabs from the cervix, vagina and urethra. If you use any drugs, antimicrobial agents or make love, this can lead to a distortion of the true picture of the disease.
The doctor will send the received materials for sowing in order to identify possible pathogens, and also possibly to determine the sensitivity of pathogenic bacteria to drugs. A number of tests will also be carried out — PCR diagnostics, ELISA or other methods to detect genital infections, including latent ones. Additionally, tests for intestinal dysbacteriosis and parasite eggs may be recommended. Only such a set of measures will accurately determine the cause of the itching and correctly prescribe all therapeutic measures.
Causes of itching in the groin area
Doctors divide all causes of itching into three large groups:
- Gynecological pathology.
- Extragenital pathology (diseases not related to the female reproductive system).
- External and internal factors of a different nature.
Let us consider in more detail the causes of itching, which are directly related to the inguinal region of a woman. Burning or itching in the groin and vagina can accompany many of the diseases in the vaginal area, especially those associated with infections and inflammation. The microflora of the female genital tract is represented by a community of beneficial and conditionally pathogenic microorganisms that are in dynamic balance. If there is a change in the balance of the microbial flora, inflammatory processes may occur, which are usually accompanied by redness and itching in the groin. Often at the same time, the nature of the discharge also changes.
The most common causes of itching
One of the common causes of discharge and severe itching is thrush. Most women of young and middle age are familiar with her. It is formed due to inflammation caused by the increased growth of specific opportunistic fungi of the genus Candida. Doctors call this pathology yeast colpitis or genital candidiasis. With it, the itching of the genital organs is pronounced, their redness with swelling, and also abundant discharge is typical, more than 1-2 teaspoons in essence. The nature of the discharge with thrush is special — they are white or milky in color, have the appearance of flakes or grains, resembling sour milk or cottage cheese in appearance.
Another common cause for burning and itching can be vulvovaginitis (inflammation of the vulva and vagina). It is formed when the balance of microbes of the beneficial and conditionally pathogenic groups changes. Usually the causes will be the excessive activity of microbes such as gardnerella. As a result of the development of the inflammatory process, itching is formed against the background of strong secretions with a sharp, unpleasant, specific type of odor (stale fish, rotten onions).
Often, itching in women is caused by infection with infections during sexual intercourse. They are called venereal when it comes to gonorrhea, syphilis, chlamydia or trichomoniasis. There are other diseases included in this group. Despite the differences in pathogens and the timing of the manifestation of clinical symptoms, typical signs for most of them are changes in discharge, itching in the genital area, burning and pain, and discomfort. In addition, they are characterized by urination disorders, the transition of infection to the uterus, appendages, and general symptoms. Such infections require urgent treatment, not only for the woman herself, but also for her sexual partner.
Skin pruritus: differential diagnosis, principles of rational pharmacotherapy / Vyalov S.S. // breast — 2015 — T. 23 No. 19