Recognizing Gynecologic Problems

There are many different gynecological problems that could occur during adolescence. All adolescent females should have the opportunity to discuss normal changes that occur in the body during this time of physical growth and development, so that any abnormal changes can be examined right away.

Gynecological signs and symptoms that may require medical attention:

  • Bleeding between periods
  • Frequent and urgent need to urinate, or a burning sensation during urination
  • Abnormal vaginal bleeding, particularly during or after intercourse
  • Pain or pressure in your pelvis that differs from menstrual cramps
  • Itching, burning, swelling, redness, or soreness in the vaginal area
  • Sores or lumps in the genital area
  • Vaginal discharge with an unpleasant or unusual odor, or of an unusual color or consistency
  • Increased vaginal discharge
  • Pain or discomfort during intercourse 

Symptoms may result from mild infections and are easy to treat. But, if they are not treated properly and quickly, they can lead to more serious conditions, including infertility or kidney damage.

Vaginal symptoms may also be a sign of more serious problems, such as sexually transmitted infections (STIs) or cancers of the reproductive tract (which occur rarely in adolescence).

Vaginal bleeding and discharge are a normal part of your menstrual cycle prior to menopause. However, if you notice anything different or unusual, consult your physician before attempting to treat the problem yourself.

Recognizing symptoms early and seeing a physician right away increases the likelihood of successful treatment.

Last Updated 12/2013