Vaginal odor can change from day to day during the menstrual cycle. An odor might be especially noticeable right after having sex. Sweating also can cause a vaginal odor.

Bacterial vaginosis is an overgrowth of bacteria typically present in the vagina. It's a common vaginal condition that can cause vaginal odor. Trichomoniasis, a sexually transmitted infection, also can lead to vaginal odor. A yeast infection usually doesn't cause vaginal odor.

Possible causes of unusual vaginal odor include:

  1. Bacterial vaginosis
  2. Poor hygiene
  3. A forgotten tampon
  4. Trichomoniasis

Less commonly, unusual vaginal odor may result from:

  1. Cervical cancer
  2. Rectovaginal fistula (an opening between the rectum and vagina that allows gas or stool to leak into the vagina)
  3. Vaginal cancer

Causes shown here are commonly associated with this symptom. Work with your doctor or other health care professional for an accurate diagnosis.

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Feb. 25, 2022