Wa `alaykum As-Salamu waRahmatullahi wa Barakatuh.
In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.
All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.
In this fatwa:
Discharge experienced by women can be of many types: maniy, madhy, wadi, or discharge which is none of the above three. Only wudu’ is necessary after madhy and wady, but both are impure. A ghusl is necessary after the exiting of maniy, and it is impure.
In his answer to your question, Mufti Muhammad Ibn Adam Al-Kawthari, Director and researcher at the Institute of Islamic Jurisprudence (Darul Iftaa, www.daruliftaa.com), Member of the Al-Qalam Shari`ah Scholars Panel, and advisor on Islamic Banking, states:
1- Maniy is a sexual fluid which exits the private parts with ‘extreme’ desire (orgasm) or sexual climax (meaning, at the peak of sexual excitement) with sexual fulfilment and is accompanied by contractions, such as during sexual intercourse. For women, it is a thin yellow fluid.
A ghusl is necessary after the exiting of maniy, and it is impure. The discharge of maniy can also take place during sleep, and also through the unlawful act of masturbation. It is a common discharge in men, and not so common in women.
2- Madhy is a pre-sexual fluid which exits when one is aroused, e.g. sexual thoughts, foreplay, etc.
3- Wady is a fluid which exits after urinating.
Only wudu’ is necessary after madhy and wady, but both are impure.
Note that the difference between maniy and the other two is that in the case of maniy the desire has to reach its peak and climax (orgasm) and there are also contractions, whilst in the case of madhy and wady, it is only mild arousal.
4- The fourth type of discharge requires some detail:
a- At times, the ‘discharge’ could simply be the natural moisture/sweat of the body. This moisture is produced on the outside, i.e. the vulva, which is naturally a moist organ. This moisture/sweat is pure and does not necessitate ghusl or wudu’.
b- Another possibility is that it could be actual discharge from the vagina (the part which is penetrated during sexual intercourse). This too is a moist organ because of the glands on the walls which secrete moisture for cleansing and comfort purposes.
This “chronic female vaginal discharge” (called rutubat al-farj) is also pure and does not invalidate wudu’ unless it is discoloured with blood or madhy. This discharge is not due to illness and comes out normally and regularly in many women, and is clear white and not discoloured. When possible, it is better to perform wudu’ in this case but not necessary.
c- Another type of discharge is that which comes from beyond the vagina, such as the cervix, and usually secretes when ovulating and is stretchy and clear. The discharge from anywhere beyond the vagina is considered impure and invalidates wudu’. (Based mainly on Shaykh Ashraf Ali Thanawi’s Imdad al-Fatawa 1/65 and Rad al-Muhtar)
Almighty Allah knows best.