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Vaginal Discharge Before Period: Normal White Discharge and 7 Types of Pathological Discharge

White discharge before periods

During the whole menstrual cycle, white discharge of various consistency and intensity secretes from the vagina. It is normally mucous, while the presence of any admixtures and unpleasant smell testifies to a certain disease. Apart from this, genital discomfort may also indicate to a pathology. We distinguish between the following types of anomalous vaginal discharge: creamy-like discharge with an unpleasant smell, curdy, foamy, watery, mucopurulent discharge, intermenstrual bleeding, blood with molecular bubbles.

Read also: Brown discharge before period: norm or pathology?

Clear Discharge Before Period: Functions and What it Looks Like

Pink Discharge Before Period – 10 Causes

What does the normal transparent-white discharge before period look like?

Vaginal discharge is normally transparent-white (mucous) and practically does not smell. In its majority this discharge is secreted from the glands, which are located in the mucous membrane of the uterine cervix (cervical mucous). Examining this discharge under the microscope, we will see exfoliated cells of the endometrial surface, which lines up the vagina, while there should be no bacteria or blood agents (erythrocytes and leucocytes). Naturally, during a period, this secrete will also contain blood.

Vaginal discharge varies in the volume and consistency according to the course of the menstrual cycle. After the period, there are usually “dry days”, when there is practically no discharge. After comes the period of more intense discharge, but still not so profuse. It is thick and sticky.

Closer to ovulation, the secrete becomes more and more “dissolved”, initially being creamy-like, then watery, and becoming profuse and resembling an egg white at the time of the ovum’s detachment form the follicle. It has to do with the fact that this very type of a “pond” is best suitable for the sperms cells’ travel, while they are waiting for the ovum. Prior to the period there is usually not too much of discharge and it has an average consistency.

Infection, as a cause of deterioration of the discharge quality

Lactobacilli are the predominant microorganisms in the vagina. They exist along with other representatives of normal micro flora, which are fewer in number. In fact, the vagina is a warm wet environment, favorable for the settlement of various bacteria. Such a colonization is contributed by:

  • Intakeofantibiotics;
  • Various systemic diseases, including diabetes mellitus;
  • Decrease in the immune system, due to the influence of harmful working conditions and smoking.

Vaginal inflammation (vaginitis) can develop in case of the disturbed balance of personal micro flora, or else, due to the penetration of pathological germs (for example, Trichomoniasis). Most often, vaginal dysbacteriosis is caused by excessive growth of Candida yeast and the so-called Gardnerella bacteria.

Besides, the quality of discharge can be affected by infectious diseases of more profound reproductive organs, such as inflammation of the uterine mucous lining – endometritis, or uterine appendages – salpingitis.

Acute infections, most often do not create diagnostical difficulties, since all the symptoms are rather prominent. As for chronic inflammations, accompanied by pain, bleeding and/or erosion of the mucous membrane, they should not be confused with oncological diseases.

Seven basic types of pathological discharge

These are the most common types of discharge, which should put the woman on alert:

  1. Creamy-white discharge with an unpleasant smell;
  2. Curdy discharge;
  3. Foamy discharge;
  4. Heavy, including profuse, watery discharge;
  5. Mucopurulent discharge;
  6. Intermenstrual bleeding and a mixture of blood and cervical mucus;
  7. Bloody discharge with bubbles and granules.

Homogeneous creamy-like discharge is different from normal white discharge before period, due to an unpleasant (fish-like) smell and the duration of more than 3-4 days. That is to say, they have nothing to do with the cycle. Most often, they coexist with such diseases as bacterial vaginosis, which is caused by activation of Gardnerella bacteria. In addition, they might be more watery, up to profuse (uncontainable) flow.

Discharge before period

Curdy milky-white discharge testifies to fungal infections. Such a condition, often indicates to the decrease of immunity. As a rule, candidosis is the case for women, who suffer from uncompensated diabetes or immunodeficiency. Such discharge might have acid or putrid smell.

Foamy discharge deserves special attention. Foaminess is a typical feature of the Trichomonas infection. The discharge can be yellow, grey or greenish, it secretes in abundance and has an unpleasant smell.

Watery discharge can be the cause of complaints among women in postmenopause period, which has to do with hormonal disruption and decline of the function of the reproductive system. This discharge can be observed in case of cervical cancer, whereas its continuous flow in combination with pain and bleeding constitute a classical symptom of cancer of fallopian tubes. This very complex of symptoms is observed in case of disturbance of ectopic pregnancy.

Mucopurulent discharge (leucorrhoea) from the vagina and cervical tube, is usually caused by inflammation of lower areas of the genital tract – vaginitis or cervicitis. At the same time, it can be indicative to malignant diseases, traumas, presence of foreign matter in the vagina, as well as helminthic invasion.

Pathological bleeding from the vagina might have cyclical (menorrhagia) or acyclical (metrorrhagia) nature. One of the causes of anomalous bloody discharge is juvenile uterine hemorrhage. It looks like an extended and more intense period, lasing more than 7-8 days, and involves large amount of blood loss. This pathology is typical for teenage girls, at the time or after initial establishment of the cycle.

Uterine bleeding looks like dark-colored discharge, secreted in a form of spotting before and after a period (premenstrual spotting), which is typical for the endometriosis – expansion of the endometrial lining outside the uterine cavity. The same picture is observed in case of various hormonal diseases, including thyroid dysfunction.

In case of a hidatidiform mole (development of the ovum, which lacks vital parts of the fetus), discharge of microelements (bubbles), which look like a bunch of grapes in the vagina (at the cellular level) can be observed.

What should be paid attention to

Certain types of normal discharge can easily be confused with pathological secrete, but it should be kept in mind, that apart from the external appearance of the discharge, one should also consider its duration, presence of admixtures, smell and accompanying sensations.

Premenstrual discharge is not considered normal if:

1. You experience:

  • Itching;
  • Pain;
  • Burning;
  • Irritation of external genitals and the inner surface of thighs.

2. You feel that

  • The amount of discharge has increased;
  • An unpleasant smell and stickiness have come around.

Appearance of bloody discharge out of the cycle requires special attention, the same ways as a mixture of mucus and blood between the periods and after the intercourse can give a warning about polyps and cervical cancer.

Any discomfort, increase or modification of the nature of discharge, must serve ground for a visit to a gynecologist. Only a specialist is able to establish the actual cause of pathological discharge and prescribe an effective treatment.

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