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Michael Salama
Michael Salama,
Category: OB GYN
Satisfied Customers: 715
Experience:  Medical director at San Miguel Medical Clinic
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I am 42 with 3 kids. Recently my periods have been smelling

Customer Question

I am 42 with 3 kids. Recently my periods have been smelling like rotten meat. I have no other symptoms. No pain, no unusual discharge. I reached up to see if I had a tampon inside and there is definitely nothing there. The Odor is still there after my periods for instants if I put a finger inside and smell it the odor is still there just not as strong as when I use a tampon during my cycle.
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: OB GYN
Expert:  Michael Salama replied 10 months ago.

Hello this is Dr. Salama MD,

Menstrual blood itself doesn't cause an odor, it is the bacteria within the menstrual blood which causes the odor.

In fact any sort of bacterial imbalance will cause an odor.
I would look at your menstrual protection, what many women don't realize is the tampons that cause various vaginal health problems in that they encourage bacterial growth and prevent vaginal cleaning.

If you use commercial tampons these contain chemicals and bleach which affect vaginal pH - in turn affecting vaginal flora, leading to the bad odor.

If you switch to menstrual cups, softcups, cloth pads, period belts, period panties, or even sponges, cotton tampons or cotton pads, the smell during your period will be significantly reduced.

For now, you should wash daily but you only ever need to wash with water, avoid soaps, washes, sprays or wipes as they can all interfere with vaginal pH which can cause harmful bacteria to multiply leading to infections.

Keep yourself dry, wearing plain cotton underwear and avoiding synthetic or tight-fitting clothing can help keep your groin cool and dry.

Let me know if you have any other questions.

If not, please don't forget to leave a positive rating (bonus appreciated) as that's the only way I get credit for answering your question.

Thank you!

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
I have never had an issue with odor or tampon use. This is uncommon for me. Could it be an infection? It's been going on for a couple of months now. Do the symptoms match a vaginal infection? Also since my tubes were tied in 2013 I have long periods.
Expert:  Michael Salama replied 10 months ago.

It can be a bacterial vaginosis which is caused by an alteration of vaginal flora.

The best treatment is a prescription antibiotic which can eliminate the infection.

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
One more question. Which antibiotic? I was taking amoxicillin for a dental implant. That didn't seem to do anything. Which antibiotic usually treats this type of infection?
Expert:  Michael Salama replied 10 months ago.

It is called metronidazole.

It comes in pills and vaginal cream.

Expert:  Michael Salama replied 10 months ago.

Is there anything else I can help you with today?

If not, please don't forget to leave a rating, thanks!

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