Changes in outflow
Vaginal discharge can take on a yellowish colour, especially due to bacterial infections of the female reproductive organs. The yellow can either be very bright or appear yellow-greenish, for example due to a trichomonas infection. The yellowish colour can be caused by purulent admixture of the vaginal discharge.
This means that the immune system has already been switched on and white blood cells, the so-called leukocytes, are involved in the process. The sexually transmitted disease gonorrhoea can also lead to a purulent yellow discharge, although completely asymptomatic courses are also possible. In addition to the change in colour of the discharge, itching, a burning sensation when urinating and a reddening of the labia minora make it suspect an inflammatory cause.
An odor reminiscent of fish can also occur in bacterial vaginal infections. A change in the colour of the discharge can be an indication of a pathological process. Especially yeast fungi, especially Candida albicans, can lead to fungal infections of the vagina with a white discharge and a crumbly or crumbly consistency.
A whitish-yellow colour of the discharge reminiscent of buttermilk is also possible. In addition, whitish coatings of the labia may occur in the course of a candida infection. Other possible symptoms of a fungal infection are burning, severe itching and a reddening of the genital area.
Bacteria can also cause a whitish discharge, which can sometimes appear grey. Many bacterial vaginal infections are characterized by a fishy smell of the discharge. If the effluent is milky white and viscous, it may also be a normal condition in some individuals.
This is particularly the case if this change occurs shortly before or after the period and is subject to cyclical fluctuations. Brown or brownish-red appearing discharge may indicate that the discharge is mixed with blood. This need not be a cause for concern in every case.
For example, an outflow occurring immediately after the period may contain old blood that may be responsible for the brownish colour. The discharge may also appear reddish to brown in the context of slight bleeding between periods or spotting due to hormonal fluctuations or the use of birth control pills. It may be advisable to consult your gynaecologist, as among many other reasons, too low hormone doses can lead to insufficient protection during pregnancy and to bleeding in between.
A forgotten tampon can also cause a brown colouring. Small superficial injuries to the vaginal mucosa caused by sexual intercourse are also possible, which can bleed easily and affect the discharge. In addition to benign changes such as polyps or myomas, tumours of the reproductive organs can also lead to blood admixture in the discharge.
Therefore, especially women after menopause with brownish discharge should consult a gynaecologist. A so-called portio ectopy, a tissue change of the outer cervix, can also lead to blood admixture in the discharge. A greenish coloration of the vaginal discharge is often the expression of a bacterial infection.
Gonococci, for example, the pathogens of the sexually transmitted disease gonorrhoea, often called gonorrhea, can cause a greenish discharge. Trichomonas also cause venereal diseases and can lead to a greenish-yellow discharge. This often appears additionally foamy and gives off an unpleasant smell.
Other bacteria can also cause a greenish discharge. In addition to the change in colour, inflammatory processes often cause severe itching and reddening of the genital area as well as pain when urinating. If the vaginal discharge takes on a fishy, unpleasant odour, it is in most cases a bacterial inflammation.
An imbalance in the vaginal flora leads to an increase in pathogenic germs. These metabolize proteins, which leads to the formation of amines and thus to the characteristic fish-like odor. Bacterial infections often cause a change in the colour of the discharge as well as burning, itching and reddening of the intimate area.
Normal effluent is usually odourless, but can also smell slightly acidic. The pH environment of the vagina is naturally in the acidic range. This condition is mainly caused by lactic acid bacteria, so-called bacteria.
The acidic pH value and the colonisation of the vagina with these bacteria repel possible pathogens and impair their reproduction. Due to the lactic acid bacteria, the smell is described as acidic and sometimes also as yoghurt-like. Odour intensity and quality can vary and is subject to numerous influences.