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Female Urogenital Infections and Their TCM Treatments

Female Urogenital Infections and Their TCM Treatments

Urogenital infections, also known as urinary and genital infections, are a common form of illness in women nowadays. The potential causes of such infections include unhygienic sex, low immunity, taking contraceptive pills for a long duration of time. Women who are pregnant or going through menopause are more prone to such infections as well.

Urinary tract infection (UTI) is an infectious disease caused by the growth and multiplication of pathogens in the urinary tract. A UTI is often caused by different types of bacteria, mycoplasma, chlamydia, viruses, etc. Most UTIs (95% of them in fact) are caused by bacteria.


  • Urinating frequently whilst also being urgent and painful
  • Sometimes accompanied by low back pain, fever, or uterine bleeding


  • Urine routine test
  • Urine culture test

Genital tract infections include vaginitis, mucopurulent cervicitis (MPC) and pelvic inflammatory disease (PID).

Vaginitis is one of the most common gynecological infections. There are:

  1. Trichomonal Vaginitis (TV):
  • Itchy, burning vulva
  • Increasing vaginal discharge, yellow bubble-like appearance with a sticky odor
  1. Vulvovaginal Candidiasis (VVC):
  • Itchy, burning vulva (most itchy out of all the other infections)
  • Increasing vaginal discharge, soya bean dregs-like appearance in white color
  • Intercourse pain
  1. Bacterial Vaginosis (BV):
  • 10-40% without symptom
  • increasing vaginal discharge with the fishy smell
  1. Aerobic Vaginitis (AV):
  • Potentially has no symptoms
  • Itchy
  • Increasing vaginal discharge
  • Intercourse pain


  • Gynecological examination & test (Leucorrhea, BV, Chlamydia, Mycoplasma, Fungus)

Mucopurulent Cervicitis (MPC):

  • Most cases don’t have symptoms
  • Increasing mucopurulent vaginal discharge
  • Intermenstrual bleeding
  • Intercourse bleeding


  • Gynecological examination & test
  • TCT Pap Smear
  • HPV
  • Vaginal ultrasound
  • Hysteroscopy

Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID):

  • Constant lower abdominal pain or pelvic pain, increased by movement or intercourse
  • Fever
  • Increasing vaginal discharge


  • Gynecological examination & test
  • Blood Routine
  • C-reactive protein (CRP)
  • Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate (ESR)
  • Vaginal ultrasound
  • Laparoscopy

Antibiotics are widely used to treat most infections in terms of western medicine treatment. In traditional Chinese medicine, however, urogenital infections are attributed to “illness of leucorrhea” or “vaginal itchiness”, which are considered to be mainly caused by dampness.

TCM believes that dampness is related to the liver, spleen and kidney. Genital tract infections are mostly inflammations, meaning there’s also heat involved as well. If it is a chronic and reoccurred infection, then the deficiency is also involved.

Therefore, TCM treatment for urogenital infections focuses on dispelling body dampness, clearing liver or kidney heat, and strengthening spleen and kidney function. Herbal medicine works very effectively on urogenital infections, especially UTIs. Herbal medicine itself can take care of early-stage of UTIs without any antibiotics.

TCM not only can take care of acute inflammations but can also boost the immune system to prevent the illness from occurring again and support the body to adjust and balance itself to natural changes.

TCM can be used not only orally but also externally on the vagina. This is effective for urogenital infections, as they help to kill pathogens, protect against inflammation, fight against viruses, release itches and adjust and balance the inner vaginal environment. Meanwhile, acupuncture can also help as an adjunctive treatment.

Dr. Serena Yang offers TCM evaluation and treatments in the Downtown (Xintiandi) and Hongmei Road clinics. Click here to make an appointment with her.