The microbial etiology of cervical infections is varied; N. gonorrhoeae and C. trachoma-tis cause endocervicitis, and herpes simplex virus can infect the stratified squamousepithelium of the ectocervix. The major clinical manifestation of cervicitis is a mucopuru-lent vaginal discharge. The cervix is friable and inflamed, and polymorphonuclear leuko-cytes are present in the exudate. Chlamydial, gonococcal, and viral cultures are needed to demonstrate the etiologic agent. Therapy depends on the etiologic agent involved (see treatment of urethritis for additional considerations).
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