Topic Overview

Vaginal yeast infections are a common problem during pregnancy. They may be caused by high estrogen levels. These infections aren't a risk to the pregnancy. But they can cause uncomfortable symptoms.

If you are pregnant and have vaginal infection symptoms, see your doctor. Don't assume that your symptoms are caused by a harmless yeast infection. If you have bacterial vaginosis or a sexually transmitted infection (STI), such as gonorrhea or chlamydia, you will need treatment to prevent problems during pregnancy.

If you are pregnant, do not use non-prescription yeast infection medicine unless you discuss it with your doctor first. Experts recommend that during pregnancy:footnote 1

  • Vaginal medicines should be used for yeast infection treatment. These may be vaginal creams or suppositories.
  • Only certain medicines should be used. Non-prescription medicines include clotrimazole (such as Canesten or Clotrimaderm), miconazole (such as Monistat), terconazole (such as Terazol), and butoconazole (such as Gynazole-1).
  • Treatment should be used for 7 days. (It can take longer than usual to cure a yeast infection during pregnancy.)

In the past, nystatin (such as Ratio-Statin) was the drug of choice for the first trimester of pregnancy. But now all vaginal medicines are considered safe during pregnancy.

Related Information

References

Citations

  1. Expert Working Group on Canadian Guidelines for Sexually Transmitted Infections (2013). Canadian guidelines on sexually transmitted infections: Section 4-Management and treatment of specific syndromes. Public Health Agency of Canada. http://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca/std-mts/sti-its/cgsti-ldcits/section-4-8-eng.php. Accessed May 22, 2015.

Other Works Consulted

  • Expert Working Group on Canadian Guidelines for Sexually Transmitted Infections (2014). Canadian guidelines on sexually transmitted infections: Supplementary statement for recommendations related to the diagnosis, management, and follow-up of vaginal discharge. Public Health Agency of Canada. http://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca/std-mts/sti-its/cgsti-ldcits/disc-pert-eng.php. Accessed May 22, 2015.

Credits

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
Martin J. Gabica, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer Deborah A. Penava, BA, MD, FRCSC, MPH - Obstetrics and Gynecology

Current as ofOctober 13, 2016