Controlled study on thymol + eugenol vaginal douche versus econazole in vaginal candidiasis and metronidazole in bacterial vaginosis

Arzneimittelforschung. 2011;61(2):126-31. doi: 10.1055/s-0031-1296178.


Purpose of the study: Bacterial vaginosis (BV) and vaginal candidiasis (VC) are usually managed with topical antibiotics. This study compared the efficacy of a thymol + eugenol vaginal douche (SD) (CAS nr. thymol: 89-83-8 and eugenol: 97-53-0), with econazole (CAS 27220-47-9) in VC and metronidazole (CAS 443-48-1) in BV, as suppository reference therapies. Thymol and eugenol are natural antibacterial and antimycotic active ingredients extracted from plants.

Methods: A multicentre, parallel group, randomized study was performed, after stratification for diagnosis. Twenty-three Italian gynaecological units enrolled 459 patients (232 BV, 227 VC). The treatments applied were as follows: SD 1 douche/day (Saugella lavanda Attiva) for 1 week, 1 metronidazole vaginal suppository/night for 1 week and 1 econazole vaginal suppository/night for 3 days. Clinical evaluations were performed before and 1 week after treatment.

Results: A similar significant symptom reduction was observed with metronidazole and SD in BV and with econazole and SD in VC.

Conclusion: SD was found to be an effective prescription drug in minor recurrent vaginal infectious episodes and its use can reduce the repeated exposure to antibiotics.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Intravaginal
  • Adult
  • Antifungal Agents / administration & dosage
  • Antifungal Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Candidiasis, Vulvovaginal / drug therapy*
  • Candidiasis, Vulvovaginal / microbiology
  • Chemistry, Pharmaceutical
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Econazole / therapeutic use*
  • Eugenol / administration & dosage
  • Eugenol / therapeutic use*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hydrogen-Ion Concentration
  • Metronidazole / therapeutic use*
  • Middle Aged
  • Suppositories
  • Thymol / administration & dosage
  • Thymol / therapeutic use*
  • Vaginosis, Bacterial / drug therapy*
  • Vaginosis, Bacterial / microbiology


  • Antifungal Agents
  • Suppositories
  • Metronidazole
  • Thymol
  • Eugenol
  • Econazole