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Cervicitis: Causes, Symptoms, Treatment

Medically reviewed by Janie-Vi Villamor Ismael-Gorospe, MD · General Practitioner

Written by Nikita Bhalla · Updated Jun 20, 2022

    Cervicitis: Causes, Symptoms, Treatment

    Cervicitis refers to the inflammation and irritation of the cervix, which is a donut-shaped opening of the uterus. It is mostly caused by sexual malpractices. These can lead to sexually transmitted diseases (STIs). However, it can also happen due to other factors.

    What are the symptoms of cervicitis?


    Most incidences of the medical condition are asymptomatic. In case there are cervicitis symptoms, not all of them will occur to every patient with the disease.

    The possible cervicitis symptoms are:

    • Unusual quantities of vaginal discharge
    • Abnormal pus-like vaginal discharge
    • Unusually frequent urination
    • Discomfort and pain while urinating
    • Urinary problems
    • Pain during intercourse
    • Vaginal bleeding after intercourse
    • Excessive bleeding between menstrual periods
    • Pelvic pain


    The most common causes of the medical condition are:

    Sexually transmitted infections: STIs like chlamydia, gonorrhea, genital herpes, trichomoniasis, etc. raise the risk of cervicitis.

    Bacterial vaginosis: Faster growth of the bacteria can lead to cervicitis. Vaginal infections usually spread to the cervix, causing inflammation and resulting in an open sore.

    Allergic reactions: Hypersensitivity to latex in condoms or contraceptive spermicides may cause allergic reactions. Other than this, products like deodorants may act as chemical irritants, causing this disease. Douching and trauma may also lead to cervicitis.

    Risk Factors

    The probable risk factors of the disease are:

    • Being sexually active from an early age
    • Faulty sexual habits like unprotected sex and sex with multiple partners, specifically those who participate in high-risk behaviors
    • Genetic history of sexually transmitted infections


    The diagnostic procedure for the medical condition usually follows a combination of physical examination, inquiries about the medical history and lifestyle of the patient, followed by medical tests. Let’s take a closer look at the procedure:

    Physical examination – The doctor will take a thorough look at the affected site based on your symptoms. Aside from this, they may look for redness, inflammation, and tenderness of the cervix and uterus.

    Investigation of medical history – The doctor is likely to inquire about your lifestyle. For instance, the number of sexual partners, sexual practices, etc. They may also ask about your personal medical history of vaginal infections.

    The doctor will also take a close look at the medications that you may be taking now or had been taking in the recent past.

    Make sure to carry all your medical documents that record the history of your personal medical conditions and drug intake. You will have to make your doctor aware of other medications like non-prescription or OTC (over-the-counter) medications, herbals, vitamins, and supplements that you may be taking presently or may have taken recently.

    This is essential for the doctor to evaluate whether your symptoms may be due to drug interactions. 

    Medical tests: Below are the diagnostic tests that you may be advised:

    • A pelvic exam: This test examines the cervix, ovaries, and vagina for the prevalence of infections like inflammation, redness, tenderness, etc. A doctor may insert a speculum into the vagina to check its walls.
    • Pap test: A clean cotton wool is used to remove a small part of the cervical or vaginal fluid as a sample for microscopic analysis. The sample is checked for the presence of infections. A urine sample may also be taken for diagnosis.


    Cervicitis treatment is determined by the underlying cause of the disease and the severity of the medical condition. There are various other factors that are considered as the age of the patient, her medical history, and type of symptoms.

    Known history of allergies to drugs and therapies are also generally considered while deciding on cervicitis treatment. 

    The treatment focuses on treating the existing symptoms, and also preventing the spread of infection and a recurrence of the medical condition.

    The treatment options are:

    • Antibiotics for destroying the bacteria/virus that has caused the disease
    • Treatment of sexual partners

    Learn more about women’s health here.


    Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

    Medically reviewed by

    Janie-Vi Villamor Ismael-Gorospe, MD

    General Practitioner

    Written by Nikita Bhalla · Updated Jun 20, 2022

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