Douching and endometritis: results from the PID evaluation and clinical health (PEACH) study

Sex Transm Dis. 2001 Apr;28(4):240-5. doi: 10.1097/00007435-200104000-00010.


Background: Douching has been related to risk of pelvic inflammatory disease (PID).

Goal: To examine the association between douching and PID in a large, multicenter, clinical trial of PID after adjustment for race/ethnicity.

Study design: Interviews were conducted with 654 women who had signs and symptoms of PID. Vaginal Gram stains and upper genital tract pathology/cultures were obtained from all the women. Women with evidence of plasma cell endometritis and/or gonococcal or chlamydial upper genital tract infections were compared with women who had neither endometritis nor upper genital tract infection.

Results: Women with endometritis or upper genital tract infection were more likely to have douched more than once a month or within 6 days of enrollment than women who never douched. These associations remained after adjustment for confounding factors, after analysis of black women only; and among women with normal or intermediate vaginal flora but not bacterial vaginosis.

Conclusion: Among a predominantly black group of women with clinical PID, frequent and recent douching was associated with endometritis and upper genital tract infection.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Chlamydia Infections / epidemiology
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Endometritis / etiology*
  • Female
  • Gonorrhea / epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Pelvic Inflammatory Disease / etiology*
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Risk Factors
  • Therapeutic Irrigation*