DR ISABELLE CARTIER / ISM / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR ISABELLE CARTIER / ISM / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Colpitis, colposcopy. Colpitis is inflammation of the lining of the vagina caused in this case by the single-celled protozoan Trichomonas vaginalis. Application of Lugol's iodine solution, used to test for cervical abnormalities, has shown up the mottled appearance typical of infection. Also known as Trichomoniasis, this infection is usually (but not always) sexually transmitted. Associated with a yellow frothy discharge from the cervix, it provokes painful inflammation of the cervix, vagina and vulva. The infection by itself is not a serious condition, and Trichomonas may inhabit the vagina for years without causing symptoms. It may occur with other sexually transmitted diseases.
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