vaginal douche

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a stream of water or air directed against a part of the body or into a cavity.
air douche a current of air blown into a cavity, particularly into the tympanum to open the eustachian tube.
vaginal douche irrigation of the vagina to cleanse the area, to apply medicated solutions to the vaginal mucosa and the cervix, or to apply heat in order to relieve pain, inflammation, and congestion. For the treatment to be effective the patient must be in the dorsal recumbent position with the hips level with the chest. Excessive pressure in administering the douche should be avoided so that solution is not forced through the cervix into the endometrial cavity.
Miller-Keane Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health, Seventh Edition. © 2003 by Saunders, an imprint of Elsevier, Inc. All rights reserved.

vaginal douche

Gentle, low-pressure irrigation of the vagina. Common protocols for antiseptic irrigations require preparing and administering 1000 to 2000 ml of 105°F (40.5°C) povidone-iodine solution while maintaining standard precautions. For hemostasis, solution temperature is increased to 118°F or 120°F (47.8° to 48.9°C). The container should be elevated up to 2 ft (61 cm) above the woman's pelvis to allow slow, low-pressure flow of the solution.


The vagina, like many other areas of the body, can cleanse itself. Thus there is very little reason for a normal, healthy woman to use a vaginal douche. Douching can upset the balance of the vaginal flora and change the vaginal pH, thus predisposing the woman to vaginitis. There is no evidence that a postcoital vaginal douche is effective as a contraceptive.

In at least one investigation, vaginal douching has been shown to be a risk factor for pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). The more frequently the subjects douched, the more likely they were to have PID.

See also: douche
Medical Dictionary, © 2009 Farlex and Partners
References in periodicals archive ?
This study that highlights the presence of environmental chemicals in vaginal douches warrants further examination.
Brodie adroitly shows how Poor tried to limit births in response to concerns about family finances, childbirth, and her children's health by concentrating sexual activity during what she considered the safe period (days 9 through 15 of the menstral cycle), and perhaps by using vaginal douches and delaying weaning.
Antacids, vitamins, eye and ear drops, laxatives, vaginal douches, or any other non-prescription item can be a potential cause of hives.
In 1930 one Canadian researcher found that out of a sample of seventy-one self-inductions forty-seven were by vaginal insertion, twenty by drugs, and four by vaginal douches.(28) Many of the women had previously aborted successfully.