Vaginal Yeast Infection During Pregnancy

Topic Overview

Vaginal yeast infections are a common problem during pregnancy, likely caused by high estrogen levels. Although these infections don't endanger a pregnancy, they can cause uncomfortable symptoms.

If you are pregnant and have vaginal infection symptoms, don't assume that your symptoms are caused by a harmless yeast infection. Instead, see your doctor to make sure that you don't have some other condition that could endanger your pregnancy. If you have bacterial vaginosis or a sexually transmitted infection (STI), such as gonorrhea or chlamydia, you will need treatment to prevent pregnancy complications.

If you are pregnant, do not use nonprescription yeast infection medicine without first discussing your symptoms with your doctor. Experts recommend that during pregnancy:1

  • Vaginal medicines, such as creams or vaginal suppositories, be used for yeast infection treatment.
  • Only certain medicines should be used. Nonprescription medicines include butoconazole (such as Femstat), clotrimazole (such as Gyne-Lotrimin), miconazole (such as Monistat), and terconazole (such as Terazol).
  • Treatment should be used for 7 days (it can take longer than usual to cure a yeast infection during pregnancy).

In the past, nystatin (such as Mycostatin) was the drug of choice for the first trimester of pregnancy. But now all vaginal medicines are considered safe during pregnancy.

Related Information

  • Vaginal Yeast Infections

References

Citations

  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2010). Vulvovaginal candidiasis section of Sexually transmitted diseases treatment guidelines 2010. MMWR, 59(RR-12): 61–63. Also available online: http://www.cdc.gov/std/treatment/2010/default.htm.

Credits

By Healthwise Staff
Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Deborah A. Penava, BA, MD, FRCSC, MPH - Obstetrics and Gynecology
Last Revised August 18, 2013

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