Causes of Yellow Discharge

Causes of Yellow Discharge
January 17 08:06 2017


Women’s health is a very complex subject that is always filled with many topic of discussion. One common question that frequently arises with regards to women’s health concerns the issue of yellowish vaginal discharge. Most women ask if it normal that they are noticing yellow like discharge from their vagina, the only way to answer this question and clear things up is to talk a little about vaginal discharge in general.

Understanding Vaginal discharge

From time to time the female reproductive system produces and secretes some discharge, this charge can be for self cleaning reasons or for other biological reasons, it is all just normal. The majority of vaginal discharge comes from mucus that is produced and secreted by the cervix. This mucus can differ in color, in texture, and in consistence according to the time of the menstrual cycle and hormonal changes. The role of this discharge is to keep the vagina moist, healthy and protected from possible infections and foreign bodies. During pregnancy, the mucus has a very important role of preventing sperm from entering the uterus region.

Most of the time vaginal discharge is clear or white in color and it is without smell. As the menstrual cycle progresses, it is normal for the discharge to change in thickness and become sticky to the touch. During the period days the discharge is white, thick and sticky on the fingers. During ovulation days the discharge becomes clear and slippery. These changes are influenced by the hormonal changes that occur as the menstrual cycle progresses.

The vaginal discharge can change from time to time and appear in different colors than the ones described above.  These changes can also be normal but can also be a sign of an underlying problem that needs to be taken care of.


Yellowish vaginal discharge

Most of the time when a woman notices yellow vaginal discharge it is on their underwear after the normal discharge has dried up. This kind of yellowish discharge is absolutely normal and should not be any cause for concern. However, from time to time, the yellowish discharge can be a sign of a problem that needs medical attention, particularly if the discharge is satisfies certain characteristics and comes accompanied by other signs and symptoms.

The first cause of abnormal yellowish vaginal discharge is poor hygiene. Poor vaginal hygiene can lead to an accumulation of the normal mucus secreted by the cervix inside the vagina, as the discharge grows older it changes in color to become yellow-like. This is usually accompanied by a foul odor that is unfavorable to the noise. An improvement in vaginal hygiene can easily take care of this problem. It is important to make sure there are no other signs that could signal other problems like infections.


Infections are the leading cause of discolored vaginal secretions. Yellowish vaginal discharge can be a result of an infection is other announcing and accompanying symptoms are present. These symptoms include fever, itchiness, pain, and an odor.

Rarely, a yellowish vaginal discharge can be a result of a possible cervical problem. Cervical polyps and cancer are the two leading causes in this regard. A visit to the doctor, full vaginal exam and a vaginal swab can be enough to confirm or eliminate these causes.

Sometimes, yellowish vaginal discharge can be caused by sexual relations and intercourse. The lubricant that comes with condoms can alter the color of mucus secretion and give it a yellow like appearance. Sperm that gets trapped inside the vagina without being absorbed can lead to a yellowish discharge. Also, the fluids that are secreted by vaginal glands during sexual arousal and intercourse can cause a change in the color of the mucus secreted by the cervix.

Some women on contraceptive pills can experience a change to yellowish vaginal discharge, especially during the first few months of using the pill or when they stop using the pill. This is explained by the fact that contraceptive pills alter the hormonal balance in the body and as a result a discoloration of cervical mucus can occur.



Other changes in vaginal discharge

Apart from the yellowish vaginal discharge, there are other unusual changes in vaginal discharge that can be a sign of an underlying problem. These changes unclude:

  • Blood stained vaginal discharge
  • Green, grey, pink or brown vaginal discharge
  • Unpleasant smells
  • Unusual changing in texture if the discharge
  • Quantity of the vaginal discharge
  • Pain, itching and fever


Causes of abnormal vaginal discharge

The most common cause of abnormal vaginal discharge is an infection. Amongst the infections the common ones are bacterial infections, yeast infections and STIs. Each infection has its own particularities when it comes to the color of the vaginal discharge. You may notice greyish vaginal discharge, greenish vaginal discharge and even brown vaginal discharge. The only way to be sure about the cause of the abnormal discharge is to consult with a medical practitioner so they can examine you and run some tests.Butterfly2



When should you seek medical advice when you have abnormal vaginal discharge?


As discussed above, abnormal vaginal discharge tends to come with other signs and symptoms that give a clue as to the underlying problem behind the discharge. It is usually advised that you go and see your gynecologist once you notice very abnormal changes to your discharge. If the abnormal discharge is accompanied by signs like fever, itchiness, pain, and foul odor then you should not waste any more time, go and seek medical advice.

Importantly, when you develop the above abnormal signs during pregnancy you should definitely see your doctor so he can eliminate and dangerous problems that could affect you and the baby.

When abnormal vaginal discharge occurs after an episode of unprotected sex or related relations then you should also seek medical advice. Your doctor will carry out a series of tests just to make sure you did not contract any sexually transmitted infections.

It is also important for all women to go in for an occasional pep smear and cervical cancer screening.


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