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Zidoval Vaginal Gel

Zidoval Vaginal Gel (40g)

Order before 3pm for delivery from Tue. 22 Jun and Wed. 23 Jun.

Zidoval Gel for BV

Zidoval is a prescription-only gel that contains metronidazole and is used to treat bacterial vaginosis (also know as gardnerella vaginalis). Using the convenient applicator, it is applied every evening for five days to quickly resolve your symptoms without the side effects sometimes associated with metronidazole tablets.

Buy Zidoval BV gel online from The Independent Pharmacy to treat BV, following a free online consultation. Our medical team will check that this is the best treatment for you and, once approved, it can be delivered quickly and discreetly as quickly as the next working day.

Zidoval Information

  • Age: 18 Years +

    Maximum per order: 2

  • Pregnancy: Not suitable

    Breastfeeding: Not suitable

Zidoval (Metronidazole) BV Gel 

Zidoval gel is an antibacterial medicine for bacterial vaginosis (BV) that kills the bacteria responsible for causing the infection. The gel, which contains metronidazole, is applied directly inside the vagina to kill the bacteria and treat the condition. This medicine is prescription only, and cannot be bought over the counter. Patients are advised to take the full course in order to clear the infection completely – otherwise it may recur. 


What is bacterial vaginosis?

BV – also called gardnerella – is a very common bacterial infection and can be caused by anything that changes the balance of bacteria in the vagina, such as having sex or frequent douching (it is not classed as an STI). Rarely is BV a matter of poor hygiene – it can happen for seemingly no reason at all. Bacterial infection symptoms primarily include abnormal vaginal discharge, itching or an unusual smell. 

With the correct BV treatment, the infection can be resolved in a matter of days. Recurrence is common, therefore completing the full course of bacterial vaginosis treatment is advised. 60% of women who have had BV will experience it again within 12 months.

BV most commonly affects women between the ages of 19-60. It’s often confused with thrush, which is similar, except thrush doesn’t usually smell and the discharge is likely to be thick and white, instead of thin and watery. Left untreated, BV can increase your risk of getting STIs, pelvic inflammatory disease, or going into early labour (if you’re pregnant).

The most commonly prescribed BV treatments are a week-long course of oral antibiotics or a course of antibiotic gel or cream – such as Zidoval gel – applied inside the vagina. At present, there are no over the counter medicines or home remedies for BV that are clinically proven to be effective.


How does Zidoval BV gel work?

Zidoval contains the active ingredient metronidazole – which is an antibiotic medicine used to treat a range of infections – not just BV. Metronidazole kills bacteria by interfering with its DNA. It’s used to kill a particular strain of bacteria known as ‘anaerobic bacteria’, which doesn’t need oxygen to multiply. It is this type of bacteria that’s responsible for causing BV. Metronidazole topical gel should be used for five consecutive days in order to cure your infection.

Metronidazole is only ever available via prescription and should not be taken or used with alcohol, as potentially serious interactions can occur. As well as killing bacteria, it can also treat parasitic infections. However, it doesn’t work for viral infections.

For best results, it’s a good idea to use metronidazole BV gel (Zidoval) at the same time every day. Stopping too early, before your BV treatment is finished, can lead to the infection coming back.


Metronidazole and alcohol

Drinking alcohol while taking or using metronidazole gel can make you feel dizzy or sick. However, this is less likely to happen when using Zidoval vaginal gel compared to metronidazole tablets. It is still best to avoid alcohol whilst you are using the gel and for 24 hours after you finish your course.

You can read more about Metronidazole and alcohol here.


Using Zidoval gel while menstruating

Metronidazole BV gel should be used for the complete length of time prescribed by your doctor, even if you’re on your period. It’s best to avoid using tampons while you have an infection and stick to unscented sanitary pads instead.


Zidoval gel alternatives 

Aside from using Zidoval gel, alternative prescription medication for bacterial vaginosis includes:


What’s the difference between Zidoval gel, Metrogel, & Rozex?

It is also used as a topical treatment to treat the red skin and pimples associated with rosacea. As well as in Zidoval, metronidazole can be found in Metrogel & Rozex. Zidoval, Metrogel, & Rozex are very similar: are all antibiotic gels containingmetronidazole.Metrogel &Rozex are for external use on the skin and are usually prescribed forrosacea, whereasZidoval is an internal treatment aimed primarily at treating BV. They should not be used for different indications. Find out more about Rozex in our guide: What is Rozex?.


Zidoval Gel Patient Information Leaflet: https://www.medicines.org.uk/emc/files/pil.9525.pdf

*Prescription medicines are supplied subject to a medical consultation at the discretion of a doctor.

How to use metronidazole vaginal gel

Zidoval gel is for vaginal use only and should be used as prescribed by your doctor or pharmacist. They will choose the correct dose for you – this will be displayed on the label.

Maintaining good hygiene while using Zidoval BV gel is important to help the infection clear up quickly. Before application, wash your hands and be sure to use a fresh applicator each time (disposable applicators are provided). 


Zidoval dosage for BV

A single adult dose is 5g inserted into the vagina once daily for 5 days – usually at bedtime.

Zidoval vaginal gel isn’t recommended for children under 18 years or women over the age of 65.


  1. Fill the applicator by screwing the open end on to the end of the tube. Squeeze the tube from the bottom to fill the applicator. The plunger will move as the applicator fills and will stop when it reaches the required 5g dose. Then, remove the applicator from the tube and replace the cap.
  2. Hold the filled applicator by the barrel and gently insert it into the vagina as far as it will comfortably go. You may find this is easier while lying your back with your knees bent.
  3. Release the gel by slowly push the plunger down – continue pressing down until the plunger stops to release the correct amount of gel. Then remove the applicator and dispose of it – you should use a fresh applicator each time.

Following the full 5-day course of Zidoval gel, if your bacterial vaginosis symptoms persist, check in with your doctor or pharmacist. It’s important not to use more Zidoval gel than you’ve been prescribed – higher doses lead to a greater risk of side effects. Should you forget to use Zidoval, continue as normal the next day – do not double dose.

Zidoval gel side effects 

All medicines run the risk of causing side effects, but they won’t necessarily affect everybody in the same way. Some of the most common side effects associated with Zidoval vaginal gel include:

  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Stomach cramps
  • Nausea
  • Vaginal thrush
  • Vaginal discharge
  • Pelvic discomfort
  • Loss of appetite
  • Unpleasant taste in your mouth
  • Unusual feeling on your tongue


These side effects may affect around 1 in 10 people. Less common side effects, which may affect around 1 in 100 people, include:

  • Depression
  • Tiredness
  • Feeling irritable
  • Dry mouth
  • Itchy skin
  • Muscle cramps
  • Period changes
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Diarrhoea
  • Constipation
  • Feeling bloated
  • Darkened urine
  • Urinary tract infections (UTIs)
  • Swelling of your vulva 

Zidoval gel ingredients 

Every gram of Zidoval gel contains 7.5mg of the active substance metronidazole. Zidoval gel also contains:

  • Carbopol 974P
  • Disodium edetate
  • Methyl parahydroxybenzoate (E218)
  • Propyl parahydroxybenzoate (E216)
  • Propylene glycol (E1520)
  • Sodium hydroxide (E524)
  • Purified water

Zidoval gel warnings and interactions


Zidoval gel will not be suitable for you if you are allergic to:

  • Nitroimidazole antibacterials
  • Metronidazole or any of the other ingredients
  • Parabens


You should also speak to a medical professional before using Zidoval gel if:

  • You are having your period
  • You are having blood tests
  • You have ever had any blood problems
  • You think you may have vaginal thrush (candidiasis)

With any vaginal infection, it’s best to avoid sexual intercourse until the infection clears up – and while using Zidoval gel.

Drug interactions

If you’re taking (or have recently taken) any of the following medicines, Zidoval gel may intensify or alter their effect. You should consult a pharmacist before use:

  • Warfarin
  • Cyclosporin
  • 5-fluorouracil
  • Lithium
  • Medicine for the treatment of cancer 

It is best to avoid drinking alcohol while using Zidoval gel, as the combination can lead to nausea, confusion, headaches, or heart palpitations. If you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, consult your doctor or pharmacist for advice before using metronidazole gel. 

Zidoval gel contains methyl parahydroxybenzoate (E218) and propyl parahydroxybenzoate, as well as propylene glycol (E1520), which can sometimes cause skin irritation.

Delivery & Shipping Information

Please note that due to the current situation with COVID-19, Royal Mail are experiencing some delays. This may mean that your order takes longer to arrive than you would normally expect. We are working hard to ensure that, where possible, all orders placed before 15:00 are still dispatched the same working day.


UK Orders

We offer FREE standard tracked delivery on orders over £40.

The following delivery options are available:

  • Standard Tracked Delivery - 2 - 3 day delivery - £2.95
  • Express Tracked Delivery - 1 - 2 day delivery - £4.45
  • DPD Next Day - 1 - 2 working days - £6.95
  • Special Delivery (Guaranteed before 21:00) - £8.95
  • Saturday Guaranteed before 21:00 - £10.45

Important Delivery Information

All our orders are sent out using Royal Mail (unless stated). We always aim to dispatch all Royal Mail & DPD orders received before 15:00 the same working day. Any orders received after 15:00 or over the weekend will be dispatched the next working day. Orders will not be dispatched on weekends or bank holidays.

All orders are subject to approval by our team of doctors and pharmacists. Your delivery date in the checkout is subject to your consultation being approved by our healthcare team.

All orders can be fully tracked from your dispatch email, in your online account and from any notifications from your courier.

We ensure all parcels are in plain packaging for discreet delivery of your medicines and pharmacy goods. Where possible, we will attempt to size all parcels to fit through your letterbox in tamper-proof packaging. By placing an order on our website, you confirm that it is safe and appropriate for a package containing medicines to be posted through your letterbox, if the carrier is able to do so. You should notify our customer support team if it is not safe for the package to be posted through the letterbox, for example due to animals or small children.

Deliveries containing pharmacy-only or prescription medicines may require a signature on receipt. 

Delivery is free for all NHS prescriptions.


Royal Mail


  • Fully tracked delivery
  • SMS & email notifications
  • Four-hour delivery window
  • Change delivery date directly with Royal Mail
  • Update delivery location - add a Safeplace, preferred neighbour, or update your delivery location to a local Post Office or Royal Mail Customer Service Point.

Royal Mail are the most widely recognised mail delivery company in the UK. Being on the UK’s 29 million doorsteps six days a week means they offer unparalleled price and convenience. The Independent Pharmacy uses Royal Mail’s Tracked 48, Tracked 24, and Special Delivery Guaranteed parcel services to offer reliable, fully-tracked delivery at very competitive prices. Your Royal Mail parcel will arrive with your normal daily delivery of post.

Please note: Royal Mail do not deliver on Sundays or Bank Holidays - this should be taken into account when ordering. 

If you are not home to accept your delivery, a card should be left by the Royal Mail representative. This card will provide details of where you can collect the order or how to arrange re-delivery.

Should you be unable to collect your missed delivery or arrange for your medication to be redelivered by Royal Mail, the pharmacy can resend your medication to the same, or a different address provided it has been returned to us and this happens within a 30 day window.

Once a package has been shipped with Royal Mail we advise that you are bound to the terms and conditions of their use together with the terms and conditions contained herein.

You have the right to cancel your order up to the point when your treatment is dispatched. The pharmacist must destroy any medication within 30 days of it being returned, even un-opened boxes, so we are not able to offer refunds once your treatment has been dispatched.




  • Fully tracked delivery
  • SMS & email notifications
  • One-hour delivery window
  • Change delivery date directly with DPD
  • Update delivery location - add a Safeplace, preferred neighbour, or update your delivery location to a local collection point.

DPD Local is the most innovative parcel carrier around. Thanks to their industry-leading Predict service, they provide parcel recipients with a one hour delivery window, notified by email, so you don't have to wait in all day. What's more, it enables receivers to watch the progress of their delivery on a real-time map, all the way down to a final 15 minute time-slot. 

As well as keeping customers informed at every stage of the journey, DPD believe in maximising choice and convenience. That's why DPD provide access to a suite of options both on the day of delivery and the night before, allowing customers to take delivery of their goods in a way that suits. If you wish to reschedule, you can:

  • Select an alternative delivery date
  • Opt for delivery to a nominated neighbour
  • Have the parcel left in a specified safe place
  • Collect the parcel from your local DPD Pickup Shop
  • Upgrade delivery to By 12

Please note: DPD do not deliver on Saturdays, Sundays or Bank Holidays - this should be taken into account when ordering. 

Once a package has been shipped with DPD we advise that you are bound to the terms and conditions of their use together with the terms and conditions contained herein.

You have the right to cancel your order up to the point when your treatment is dispatched. The pharmacist must destroy any medication within 30 days of it being returned, even un-opened boxes, so we are not able to offer refunds once your treatment has been dispatched.


Forwarding houses

We are unable to ship orders to mailing or forwarding houses for onwards shipping to locations outside of the UK.


BFPO Postcodes

Unfortunately we are unable to deliver medicines to BFPO postcodes.


Remote Areas

Please be aware that Royal Mail Guaranteed services are not available to all customers in the UK, especially those that live in remote postcodes. Royal Mail advise customers of the following:

We deliver by 17:30 the next working day in the following postcode areas:
AB30 - 39, 41 - 45, 51 - 56
GY9 Alderney (Channel Islands)
HS1, 3 - 9
IV21 - 28, 40 - 49, 51 - 56
KA27, 28
KW1 - 3, 5 - 15
KW16 Stromness Town only
PA20 (0&9)
PA28 - 38, 41 - 49, 76, 77
PH15, 17 - 26, 31 - 40, 49, 50


We deliver within two working days by 17:30 to the following postcodes areas:
GY1 Herm (Channel Islands)
GY9 Sark (Channel Islands)
PA60 - 75, 78
ZE2, 3


We deliver within three working days by 17:30 to the following postcode areas:
KW16 - non-Town
PH30, 41 - 44


Please note: This applies to our 'Special Delivery' and 'Saturday Guaranteed' services.


International Orders

We are currently unable to ship orders outside of the UK.

We are unable to ship orders to mailing or forwarding houses for onwards shipping to locations outside of the UK.

Need to know more about Bacterial Vaginosis (BV)?

Visit our advice area or contact our support team

Zidoval Vaginal Gel Reviews

Unsure about a treatment?
Ask our medical team for impartial information and advice about any treatment we provide or medical condition that we treat before you buy.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Is Zidoval gel safe in pregnancy?

    Zidoval should be used with caution if you are pregnant – its safety during pregnancy has not yet been established. While it’s thought to be relatively low risk, it should only be used if advised by a your GP or midwife. We are unable to provide BV treatment online to women who are pregnant.

  • What is Zidoval gel used for?

    Zidoval vaginal gel contains metronidazole – an antibiotic used to treat bacterial infections. It is an internal gel licensed for the treatment of bacterial vaginosis.

  • Does Zidoval gel work?

    Yes – Zidoval has been shown to be an effective treatment for BV and vaginal bacterial infections. In clinical studies, there are no significant differences in cure rates between metronidazole tablets and Zidoval gel1. It works by destroying the bacteria that cause the infection to restore your natural pH balance.

  • How long does it take for Zidoval to work?

    Most courses of metronidazole topical gel are prescribed for 5 days, after which time your infection should have cleared up. If it doesn’t, consult your GP to discuss the next steps.

  • Can you drink on metronidazole gel?

    Metronidazole can react badly with alcohol, certainly when taken orally. When used in gel form, the effect of the interaction is likely to be less extreme compared to the tablets, but there can still be side effects, so it’s worth avoiding alcohol while using this treatment and for 24 hours after finishing.

  • Can I use metronidazole gel during the day?

    It’s recommended to use metronidazole gel at bedtime, giving it time to work while you’re lying down and movement is minimal. This also helps to keep the timing consistent.

  • Can I use a tampon while using Zidoval?

    No – you should not use tampons while using Zidoval gel. If you are on your period and your doctor has recommended metronidazole topical gel, choose an external sanitary product, such as pads or absorbent underwear. 

  • Is bacterial vaginosis contagious?

    BV is not contagious – it’s an infection caused by an imbalance of bacteria in the vagina. However, having BV does increase a woman’s susceptibility to STIs.

  • How do you get a bacterial infection?

    Bacterial vaginosis is a common infection caused by an imbalance of naturally occurring bacteria in the vagina. In fact, half of women who have bacterial vaginosis do not notice any symptoms. Your risk of getting BV is higher if you have multiple sexual partners or douche regularly, since douching removes some of the normal bacteria in the vagina. Lower your risk by using mild, non-deodorant soaps, unscented sanitary products, and practising safe sex.

  • How to treat bacterial vaginosis while pregnant

    Around 10-30% of pregnant women will experience BV during their pregnancy. There is some evidence to suggest that bacterial vaginosis is associated with preterm labor, as well as miscarriages and low birth weight. Therefore, treatment is highly recommended. Consult your GP or midwife to determine whether treatment for BV will be suitable for you.

Authored By:

A photo of  Andy Boysan

Andy Boysan


Published on: 18-05-2018

Last modified on: 13-05-2020

Andy is a co-founder, the superintendent pharmacist and director at The Independent Pharmacy.

Reviewed By:

A photo of  Steve Stoddart

Steve Stoddart

BPharm IP

Reviewed on: 18-05-2018

Next review date: 13-05-2022

Steve is an expert clinical pharmacist that has recently added prescribing to his repertoire.

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