When you have that bothersome itching again and again, it may be due to chronic or recurrent yeast infections, or it could be something else. If you find yourself using those over-the-counter yeast medications frequently, then you owe yourself an evaluation to find out what’s really going on. Some women have recurrent yeast infections from strains of yeast that don’t respond to the usual medications. Having a yeast culture done will determine if you have the most common strain of yeast (Candida albicans) or a more unusual strain such as Candida glabrata or Candida tropicalis. Candida albicans responds well to the usual yeast medications, but Candida glabrata and Candida tropicalis require different treatments because they are resistant to the usual medications.
Some women who are treated multiple times for chronic vaginal or vulvar itching don’t have a yeast or any other infection at all, but instead have a skin condition that affects the genital area. These conditions can cause the genital skin to be thicker (lichen simplex chronicus) or thinner (lichen sclerosus) than usual, and the color may be different from the surrounding skin. The skin changes are often very subtle. It takes an experienced physician with knowledge of genital skin conditions to be able to make the correct diagnosis and prescribe the right medication to alleviate these bothersome symptoms.
During her residency, Dr. Clark worked with one of the foremost experts in vulvar skin conditions. She has the background and experience to diagnose and treat unusual skin conditions such as lichen sclerosus and lichen simplex chronicus and provide relief to women who suffer from these conditions.