What Causes Uterus Infection?

Uterine infections, also known as endometritis or pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), can occur due to various causes, often involving the introduction of harmful bacteria into the uterus. Some common causes and risk factors for uterine infections include:

  • Childbirth: Infections can occur after childbirth, especially if there were complications during labor, or if the amniotic fluid was contaminated with bacteria.
  • Cesarean Section: Women who undergo a cesarean section (C-section) are at a higher risk of uterine infections than those who deliver vaginally. The incision made during the procedure can provide a pathway for bacteria to enter the uterus.
  • Gynecological Procedures: Invasive gynecological procedures, such as dilation and curettage (D&C), hysteroscopy, or endometrial biopsy, can introduce bacteria into the uterus, potentially leading to infection.
  • Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs): Sexually transmitted infections, particularly chlamydia and gonorrhea, can ascend through the reproductive tract and cause uterine infections if left untreated.
  • Bacterial Vaginosis: Bacterial vaginosis (an imbalance of vaginal bacteria) can increase the risk of uterine infections by allowing harmful bacteria to travel from the vagina into the uterus.
  • Intrauterine Devices (IUDs): Although rare, uterine infections can develop in some women who use intrauterine devices (IUDs). This is more common in the first few weeks after IUD insertion.
  • Tampon Use: In extremely rare cases, using tampons improperly or leaving them in for an extended period can potentially lead to a uterine infection known as toxic shock syndrome (TSS).
  • Other Risk Factors: Certain risk factors, such as a weakened immune system, obesity, or a history of uterine infections, can increase susceptibility to uterine infections.

The symptoms of uterine infections may include pelvic pain, abnormal uterine bleeding, fever, foul-smelling vaginal discharge, and general discomfort. If you suspect a uterine infection, it is essential to seek medical attention promptly, as untreated infections can lead to more serious complications, including infertility and chronic pelvic pain. Treatment typically involves antibiotics to clear the infection, and in some cases, hospitalization may be required for severe cases.

Preventative measures, such as safe sexual practices, good hygiene, and following proper post-operative care instructions, can help reduce the risk of uterine infections. It’s important to consult with a healthcare professional for proper diagnosis and treatment if you experience any symptoms suggestive of a uterine infection.