BV infection is commonly treated with a range of antibiotics. However, in some cases treatment fails and infections become resistant. Even women whose infection clears frequently can become re-infected later.
We found that paternal race is an independent risk factor for BV during pregnancy, and that this is at least as important a risk factor as maternal race, continued Dr. Simhan. Studies on the contribution of BV to adverse pregnancy outcomes should consider paternal race as an important factor.
A recent study from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that preterm birth contributed to more than a third of infant deaths twice as many as previously thought, making it the leading cause of infant deaths yet the underlying causes of premature birth are not well understood.
Reasons for the observed variance in BV rates among racial groups also are not well understood, Dr. Simhan said.
There could be genetic differences that relate to why infection rates are different, and maybe some differences in nutritional status that could play a part. But we dont even know the differences in normal vaginal flora among racial groups, he said. More study is definitely needed. What we can say now is that its just not as simple as treating the woman.
Contact: Michele D. Baum
University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences