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New Bacterial Vaginosis Screening Guidelines Issued

Guidelines recommend against screening asymptomatic, low-risk pregnant women

TUESDAY, Feb. 5 (HealthDay News) -- New evidence shows that there's no need for bacterial vaginosis screening and treatment in pregnant women who have a low risk for premature delivery, according to updated guidelines from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) published in the Feb. 5 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

Peggy Nygren, of the Oregon Health & Science University in Portland, Ore., and colleagues conducted a meta-analysis of seven new randomized, controlled studies and data from the 2001 USPSTF recommendations assessing the effects of bacterial vaginosis screening and treatment on preterm delivery, low birth weight and preterm premature rupture of membranes.

In women with low as well as high risk for preterm delivery, the researchers found no evidence that screening improves pregnancy outcomes. They also found good evidence that treatment has no benefit for low-risk women, conflicting evidence that treatment benefits high-risk women, and fair evidence that false-positive results can lead to unnecessary treatment.

"The USPSTF recommends against screening for bacterial vaginosis in pregnant women at low risk for premature delivery," according to the new recommendations. "The USPSTF believes that information is insufficient to recommend either for or against screening for bacterial vaginosis in pregnant women at high risk for premature delivery. These recommendations do not apply to pregnant women who have symptoms of bacterial vaginosis. The recommendations may change as new studies become available."

Abstract - USPSTF
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Abstract - Nygren
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