Infective genital discharge in a pregnant mother poses a greater risk of transmission of HIV to the unborn child and other complications such as abortion, premature rupture of membrane, prematurity and low birth weight. To detect some common microbial agents of abnormal vaginal discharge in pregnant women in order to improve the early diagnosis and prompt treatment in line with current syndromic management. A prospective study of female genital swabs from pregnant women collected from Primary Health Care Centers, Jos and analysed for microscopy, culture and sensitivity in Jos University Teaching Hospital, December 2006 to December 2007. Data on epidemiologic indices were collected from the patients, using structured interviewer- administered questionnaires. Microbial agents were detected in 54.3% (n = 380) of a total 700 female genital swab from the pregnant mothers studied. Candida species were at the peak of the group of causative agents with 80.0% (n = 304) of the 380 positive genital swab samples, other causative agents were Gardnerella vaginalis, an agent of bacteria vaginosis with 7.6% and Trichomonas vaginalis, 1.8%. The distribution of abnormal vaginal discharge was highest in the multigravida (73.3%) and is commonest in the first and third trimesters of pregnancy with 44.7 and 39.5% respectively. Abnormal vaginal discharge was prevalent in the multigravida group and the commonest microbial agents of infective vaginal discharge among the pregnant mothers were Candida species. We recommend early diagnosis, prompt treatment and prevention of infective female genital discharge in pregnant mothers in order to curtail the transmission of HIV.
Key words: Microbial agents, abnormal vaginal discharge, pregnant mothers.
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