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Open Access Research article

Investigation of vaginal microbiota in sexually active women using hormonal contraceptives in Pakistan

Yasmeen Faiz Kazi1*, Sobia Saleem1 and Nasreen Kazi2

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Microbiology, Shah Abdul Latif University, Khairpur, Sindh, Pakistan

2 Department of Pharmacology, Liaqat University of Medical and Health Sciences, Jamshoro, Sindh, Pakistan

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BMC Urology 2012, 12:22  doi:10.1186/1471-2490-12-22

Published: 18 August 2012

Abstract

Background

Previous studies report association of contraceptives with moderate increase in urinary tract infection among sexually active premenopausal women. The aim of our study was to find out whether the use of hormonal contraceptives has any effect on microbiota of the vagina in the contraceptives users in Khairpur Sindh Pakistan.

Methods

A prospective study in woman population of Khairpur Sindh Pakistan aged 20–30 years and 31–40 years, using Hormonal contraceptives was carried out. High vaginal swab samples (n = 100) were collected from the test populations as well as control group (n = 100) and investigated for vaginal microbial flora using standard microbiological and biochemical techniques.

Results

Vaginal swabs culturing from hormonal contraceptives users in the age group 20–30 years showed statistically insignificant Candida sp (10% samples), and statistically significant (p < 0.05) Staphylococcus saprophyticus. (18% samples), Streptococcus agalactiae (23% samples), Escherichia coli (28% samples) and Lactobacillus fermentum (32% samples). In the age group 31–40 years, statistically significant percentage of samples (p < 0.05) showed Lactobacillus fermentum (28%), Candida sp (24%), and E. coli, (24%) where statistically insignificant samples showed Staphylococcus saprophyticus (13%) and Streptococcus agalactiae (11%).

Conclusions

The use of hormonal contraceptives alters the normal microbiota of vagina in women according to the age. Lactobacillus fermentum appeared as the predominant species followed by E. coli among the age group of 20–30 years and, Lactobacillus fermentum, Candida sp and E. coli as predominant among women of age group 31–40 years when compared to corresponding control groups. An inverse relationship between E. coli and Lactobacillus fermentum was observed in the women aged 20–30 years.