Bacterial and viral infections have many things in common. Both types of infections are caused by microbes — bacteria and viruses, respectively – and spread by things such as:coughing and sneezing, contact with infected people, especially through kissing and sex.
Toxic shock syndrome is a rare but serious medical condition caused by a bacterial infection. It is caused when the bacterium Staphylococcus aureus gets into the bloodstream and produces toxins.
Bacterial vaginosis (BV) is the most common cause of vaginitis, accounting for 50% of cases. Bacterial vaginosis is caused by a change or imbalance in the types of the bacteria normally found in the vagina and causes an overgrowth of organisms such as Gardnerella vaginalis.
“Anaerobic” means the bacteria doesn’t need any oxygen to survive or grow. Small amounts of these anaerobic bacteria and Gardnerella can normally be found in your vagina. Bacterial vaginosis occurs when the balance of organisms in your vagina is upset and the anaerobic bacteria overgrow. The good, protective bacteria Lactobacilli are then outnumbered and not able to do their normal job, which is to make a natural disinfectant which helps keep organisms at the normal, healthy balance in your vagina.
This syndrome may occur when Staphylococcus aureus infects tissue (for example, in a wound) or is simply growing on a tampon (especially the superabsorbent type) in the vagina. Exactly why superabsorbent tampons increase the risk of this syndrome is unknown. Leaving a diaphragm in the vagina for more than 24 hours also increases the risk slightly.
Bacteria can easily attach to the object (i.e. tampon, pleasure-device etc.) and multiply. Due to the bacteria the discharge gets an unpleasant smell and could start to look like pus (yellow or brown-grey). All this can be resolved by removing the object from the vagina. When a tampon or other object remains in the vagina for a long period of time it can cause an infection of the blood, which can be very dangerous.