One of the normal commensal the vagina is Candida species, which under certain privileged condition become pathological. Majority of the women present to the gynecology OPD with complains of white discharge, on failure of recognizing the yeast at the appropriate time, leads to frequent hospital visit and lower genital discomfort.
Objective: A cross section study was performed to study the prevalence of vaginal candidiasis in the reproductive age group and the associated risk factors.
Subjects and methods: Women between the age group 18 to 45 visiting the mega health camp was included in the study, 2 swabs one of the high vaginal swab and the other being endocervical swab were. One swab was used to perform the smear with KOH wet mount and gram stain, and the other for inoculation on Sabouraud's dextrose agar and incubated aerobically at 33 °C for 48 hours.
Results: Of the 321 women screened the prevalence was found to be 37.3%, 60% was that of Candida albicans and 40% that of non-albicans candidiasis. Vaginal swab with positive Candidiasis was dominant between 21 to 25 age group. 26.6% gives history of hospital visit for the white discharge per vagina and chronic itching a minimum of 2 times. The risk factors and its association with candidiasis was 35 (29.1%) in pregnant women and 7 (5.5%) in diabetics. Bacterial vaginosis was the most common associated infection with candidiasis.
Conclusion: A routine high vaginal swab for smear and culture must be performed for every women presenting with complains of chronic white discharge and itching to rule out fungal infection and prevent use of antifungals. The importance of association of the age with candidiasis strongly indicated the need of sex education for the vulnerable population.