Article Text


Microbial ecology of the female lower genital tract during pregnancy
  1. John de Louvois,
  2. Rosalinde Hurley,
  3. Valerie C. Stanley,
  4. J. B. Jones,
  5. J. E. B. Foulkes


    The posterior fornices of the vagina of 280 unselected pregnant women were sampled, using a sponge swab, squeezed out into Stuart's Transport Medium. Other specimens were also taken. Eleven primary media were inoculated, wet swabs were examined, and Gramstained smears were also made. Nineteen groups or species of microbes were identified.

    Nearly 80% of women harbour pathogenic, or potentially pathogenic microbes; 52% harbour streptococci of various sorts. The incidence of the various groups, and species of microbes is tabulated. There is a statistically significant correlation between the presence of polymorphonuclear leucocytes in excess of one per high power field, and the presence of lesions of the cervix.

    Statistics from


    • * Paper read at ‘Research Work in Progress’ Symposium, British Postgraduate Medical Federation, 19 February 1974.

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