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An image of a pap stain with a micrograph of a clue cell (center), covered in bacteria. An unremarkable squamous cell is located at the bottom left, and a neutrophil at bottom center.
Figure 7.1 Infections of the Genitourinary System Infections of the uterus, pelvis, and urinary tract are common and endemic in developing countries and specifically affect people assigned female at birth. (credit: “Micrograph of a clue cell” by Mikael Häggström, M.D./Wikimedia Commons, Public Domain)

Commonly occurring genitourinary and reproductive system infections in people assigned female at birth affect all age groups in all areas of the world. Infections may be caused by bacteria, viruses, or yeasts and can cause symptoms and even permanent damage that can affect the reproductive system or a fetus or neonate in a pregnant patient. Choices in diet, personal hygiene, and clothing can influence risk factors for these infections as much as sexual practices and the choice of sexual partner. The role of the nurse is to be direct and nonjudgmental in discussing these life choices and infectious findings with patients.


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