Dr. Aastha Garg, Dr. Romi Bansal, Dr. Harbhajankaur shergill


Background: Bacterial vaginosis (BV) is the most frequent type of vaginitis in women of reproductive age. BV is an imbalance in the ecology of the normal vaginal flora that is characterized by the depletion of lactobacilli, and the proliferation of anaerobic bacteria.It most often manifests clinically as a vaginal pH of > 4.5, the presence of thin whitish homogenous vaginal discharge, the detection of “clue” cells and the presence of an amine odour after the addition of 10 percent potassium hydroxide. These anaerobic bacteria through specific products stimulate the decidual tissue; an increase of cytokine level and of the release of A2 phospholipase, and prostaglandins will lead to uterine contractions and preterm labor activity.Bacterial vaginosis can lead to premature rupture of membranes, preterm labor, chorioamnionitis, development of PID following abortion.

Objectives: To study the prevalence of BV in women presenting with preterm and term labour and to analyze its association as the causative factor of PTL.

Methods: A cross sectional study involving 260 patients with preterm and term labour was conducted at a tertiary care hospital in North India. BV was determined to be present or absent on the basis of Amsel’s criteria. Pearson’s chi-square test was used to demonstrate the difference between both groups with respect to various categorical data.

Results: The proportion of patients who fulfilled Amsel’s criteria for the diagnosis of BV was significantly more in PTL group as compared to term labour group, and the difference was statistically significant.

Conclusion: BV is most common preventable cause of preterm labour.Therefore the testing for BV and its prompt treatment may reduce the risk of PTL. This will also go a long way in the prevention of neonatal complications due to prematurity.


Bacterial vaginosis, Preterm labour, Term labour, Amsel’s criteria, Clue cells.

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