Diagnosis Of Underlying Conditions
Blood clots in and of themselves aren’t a medical condition, but rather a possible symptom of another underlying condition. Your healthcare provider may start trying to diagnose the cause of your blood clots by asking you some questions, such as:
- How long does your period last?
- How heavy is your usual flow?
- Have you noticed changes in your flow over time?
- Have you been pregnant before?
- Have you ever had pelvic surgery?
- Do you use birth control and, if so, what kind?
- What medications are you on?
Next, your healthcare provider will do a pelvic exam. They may also want to do some tests to figure out what might be causing your blood clots. These tests may include:
Blood Clots Healthcare Provider Discussion Guide
Get our printable guide for your next healthcare provider’s appointment to help you ask the right questions.
My Period Is 4 Days Early What To Expect
If your period is four days early, then its likely due to implantation. Implantation can cause you to have spotting or slight vaginal bleeding that last for hours or days. You should wait for some days then take a pregnancy test. Other causes like stress, eating disorders, emergency contraception can affect your period too.
What Is The Normal Period In Girls
If you are seeing your period for the first time and you are not sure about what is normal, these are some period facts you should know.
Period is the shredding of the lining covering your womb. This lining is called the endometrium. During each menstrual cycle, you will experience bleeding that comes out of your vagina. The first time your period starts is menarche. When your period finally stops is called menopause.
A normal period in girls last about 2 to 7 days and you may experience cramps or pain in your abdomen.
A normal period may have blood clots sometimes. This is because excessive period blood clots may not be broken down by fibrinolysin.
Between 2 of your menstruation is your menstrual cycle. It is important that you chart your menstrual cycle to know if its regular or not.
Within each of your menstrual cycle, it is expected that you will ovulate. Ovulation, which occurs in the middle of your cycle, is the rupture of the most mature follicle with the release of an egg . When the egg is released, it is pushed into the fallopian tube for fertilization to take place.
During this rupture of the follicles, there may be slight bleeding that sometimes occurs in girls. This bleeding is the cause of brown discharge in women.
Recommended Reading: How To Tell Period Is Coming
How To Treat The Problem
The NHS recommends you see your doctor if your periods have suddenly got heavier and youre concerned about it. Also, they state that if you are experiencing other symptoms such as severe cramp and bleeding between periods then a doctor will be able to see if there is an underlying cause for this.
Some common treatments for heavy periods include contraceptives though I wont go into the details much more than this as what you are prescribed will depend on whats going on with your body!
Once youve got the green light from your doctor, a herbal remedy such as Agnus castus may be used to address heavy periods.
This symptom is often associated with too much oestrogen or too little progesterone but the remedy helps to balance these things out. Please note however, that Agnus castus cannot be used alongside hormonal contraceptives.
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How To Treat A Long Period
Treatment methods for a long period can vary. Your doctor will treat the underlying cause. They may also recommend a treatment to reduce your current bleeding, regulate your period, or relieve any discomfort.
Hormonal birth control may regulate your period and shorten it in the future. This medication can be administered as:
- a pill
- a shot
- a vaginal ring
Your doctor also may advise you to take medication that reduces pain or discomfort you experience from the prolonged period. These medications may include over-the-counter nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories, such as Advil or Motrin.
In some cases, your doctor may recommend a surgical procedure to alleviate long periods.
Dilation and curettage can thin the layer of your uterus and reduce how much you bleed during your period.
If youre no longer considering having children, you may undergo endometrial ablation, resection, or a hysterectomy. These procedures can relieve the long periods, but they may also eliminate the possibility of getting pregnant.
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Diagnosis Of Painful Periods And Heavy Bleeding
UT Southwesterns experienced gynecologists conduct a thorough evaluation, which includes a:
- Physical exam
- Review of personal medical history, including details of the patients menstrual cycle
- Discussion of symptoms
Patients should bring information about the dates and lengths of their last several periods. For sexually active patients, a pelvic exam will be performed to check for infections and to examine the cervix.
To diagnose heavy bleeding and painful periods, our doctors usually recommend one or more tests, such as:
- Blood tests to look for signs of iron deficiency, thyroid disorders, or blood-clotting abnormalities
- Ultrasound: Diagnostic tools that use sound waves to produce images of the pelvic organs. Used to look for any abnormalities
- Pap smear: Sample of cells from the cervix that are examined under a microscope for infection or changes that can lead to cancer or already are cancerous
- Endometrial biopsy: A test that samples a small amount of endometrial tissue for examination under a microscope
- Magnetic resonance imaging scans: Equipment that uses a large magnet and radio waves to produce detailed images of pelvic organs
Based on the results of these tests, we might recommend further testing, such as:
How Is Menorrhagia Diagnosed
Menorrhagia is diagnosed by your doctor through a series of questions about your medical history and menstrual cycles. Usually for women with menorrhagia bleeding lasts for more than 7 days and more blood is lost .
Your doctor may ask for information about:
- Your age when you got your first period
- Length of your menstrual cycle
- Number of days your period lasts
- Number of days your period is heavy
- Quality of life during your period
- Family members with a history of heavy menstrual bleeding
- Stress you are facing
- Blood test to check thyroid, check for anemia and how the blood clots
- Pap test to check cells from cervix for changes
- Endometrial biopsy to check uterine tissue for cancer or abnormalities
- Ultrasound to check function of blood vessels, tissues and organs
Sometimes additional tests are still required to understand the cause of bleeding, including:
- Sonohysterogram to check for problems in the lining of the uterus
- Hysteroscopy to check for polyps, fibroids or other problems
- Dilation and curettage . This test can also treat the cause of the bleeding. During this test, the lining of the uterus is scraped and examined under sedation.
Also Check: What Is Life Annuity With Period Certain
I Got My Period A Week Early What Does It Mean
If your period occurs early, then it may be due to non-pregnancy causes like stress or hormonal changes in your body. Early signs of menopause can cause an early period too. However, period that occurs a week early is likely due to pregnancy.
Now its your turn. Do you have early menstruation? Let us know your symptoms and if we could help.
The Shot And The Implant
Methods like the contraceptive injection and the implant suppress ovulation . Most people who donât ovulate due to these progestin-only contraceptives experience shorter, lighter, or occasionally absent bleeding days, though this doesnât always happen .
Unpredictable bleeding, spotting, and prolonged bleeding are common when using these methods, especially during the first few months . These symptoms usually improve with time, but they can continue for some people.
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What Is Considered A Heavy Period
While every womans period can be different, the standard length for a normal period is usually between three and seven days, with the most volume of bleeding during the first few days that gets increasingly lighter. Youve also got your typical cramps, bloating and spotting thrown in there too. But heavy periods? Those can last more than seven days, with a dense flow that soaks through one or more pads or tampons every hour. As well as pain in the abdomen or lower back and fatigue.
Dr. Jessica Shepherd, OB-GYN and womens health expert, tells SheKnows about common cues that often indicate a heavy period. Signs of a heavy period can be large menstrual blood clots, having to change a pad in less than one hour due to pads being saturated with blood, and having many bleeding accidents through clothes or bedding, she says.
Having to carry around a change of underwear or pants and excess period supplies in anticipation of a leak, or experiencing blood clots the size of a quarter or larger are distressing burdens, to say the least. And it turns out they might be an indication that something more is going on inside your body.
Cervical Polyps Or Cancer
Cervical polyps are growth that hangs into your cervix. This can cause bleeding in women during intercourse and may be confused with period. Also, women with cancer of the cervix can have vaginal bleeding.
If you are more than 40 years and notice irregular bleeding, then it may not be period. Inform your doctor ASAP as it may be due to endometrial cancer.
Read Also: Why Am I Bleeding And Not On My Period
How Can I Stop Heavy Periods
If youve heard that the only options for treating heavy periods are hormone therapy or surgery, thats not true! Just like there are many causes of menorrhagia, there are many treatment options available. Were often able to manage heavy periods with treatments ranging from diet changes to prescription medication.
Menorrhagia can usually be managed with medication and lifestyle changes. In some cases, heavy periods caused by fibroids, growths or endometriosis might be best treated with surgery. The best way to know which treatment options will work best for you is to talk to a doctor.
Expert Management For Painful Periods And Heavy Bleeding
For most women, menstrual cycles occur about every 28 days, and periods last four to seven days. Abnormal menstruation includes problems such as heavy bleeding, known as menorrhagia, irregular menstrual bleeding, and pain during periods, known as dysmenorrhea.
UT Southwestern gynecologic surgeons, specialists, and their teams are nationally recognized for their expertise in womens health care. We participate in research to improve diagnosis, management, and treatment for heavy, irregular, painful periods. Our specialists are also faculty members, dedicated to educating future womens health doctors and other care providers.
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It Could Be A Sign Of Pregnancy
While one of the clear signs of pregnancy is missing your period, it turns out that some women continue to experience bleeding or a light version of their period when theyre pregnant, says fertility expert Janet Choi, M.D., medical director at CCRM in New York. In fact, shes had patients whove been struggling to get pregnant go out drinking after a light version of their period shows uponly to later learn that they really are pregnant.
Unusually light periods or spotting could also indicate an ectopic pregnancy , which can be very dangerous. When in doubt, take a pregnancy test.
What About Conventional Medicine
Your doctor will discuss which treatment would be most effective for you. He may suggest a contraceptive pill or HRT which would influence your hormones in order to regulate your periods. However, it is important to be aware of the side effects of these treatments. He may also give you medication to stop flooding quickly, if your periods are very heavy or prolonged.
If you are worried that your heavy periods are caused by an underlying health issue or are resulting in anaemia, then it is also important to visit your doctor. Heavy periods are not something which should be ignored, as loss of blood can be detrimental to health.
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Reasons Your Period Is Heavier Than Usual
From no-biggie birth control changes to serious medical problems.
When it comes to menstruation, not all periods are created equal. Any Mean Girls fan knows that some women just have a heavy flow and wide-set vagina! And while you shouldnt worry if you typically use super tampons while your friends always grabbing the light ones, something might be up if your flow has dramatically changed and is now heavier than it usually is.
Women are definitely aware of whats normal for them, says ob-gyn Jennifer Ashton, M.D. If one of my patients is experiencing something irregular and it happens three months in a row, I like to see her.
From no-biggie birth control changes to serious medical problems, here are seven reasons why you might be bleeding more than usual.
Considering that hormonal birth-control pills often regulate and lessen periodsin fact, some doctors prescribe it specifically to lighten up heavy flowsit makes sense that if you switch to a non-hormonal pill or stop taking oral contraception completely, youre going to be going through your tampons faster. And although IUDs like Mirena also lighten periods, Ashton says that non-hormonal IUDs tend to cause heavier periods in most women. While this is generally normal, see a healthcare professional if your heavy bleeding continues three months after insertion.
Treatments For Heavy Periods
A womans period is an excellent indicator of many facets of her overall health. Talking openly with your doctor about your cycle can help you get the treatment you need.
If you have consistently heavy periods, your doctor may recommend a combination of hormonal or nonhormonal therapy to regulate your cycle and prevent heavy bleeding. The hormones come in different forms, including:
Read Also: Why Do I Get A Yeast Infection After My Period
What Is Very Heavy Period Flow Or Menses
Normal blood loss during period in women is usually less than 80mls. If your period is more than 80mls then it is heavy. However, it may be difficult to calculate how much of blood youve lost during menstruation.
One easy way to know is the frequency at which you change you pads. If you change pads too frequently than usual it could mean heavy or increased menstrual flow.
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Uterine fibroids are small, non-cancerous growths inside the uterus. And while they may sound scary, theyre actually much more common than youd think. One study from the Birmingham Womens Hospital found that 70 percent of women will have at least one before the time they reach 50and one of the main symptoms of uterine fibroids is heavy bleeding, sometimes with blood clots or bleeding in between periods. It can be an issue that in some cases can incapacitate a woman for a couple of times a year, says Wysocki. And anything that incapacitates a woman from carrying out her regular functioning should be looked into. Sometimes the solution can be simple as going on birth control, getting an IUD, or taking another form of non-contraceptive medication.
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According to the Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome Foundation, up to 10 percent of women have PCOS and approximately 50 percent of those women dont even realize they have it. Women with PCOS can get a cluster of cysts on their ovaries that could lead to heavier periods. According to Wysocki, ovulation, which is irregular for women with PCOS, triggers the conditions for the lining of the uterus to shed. If that trigger is absent, the uterine lining continues to thicken and later causes much bloodier periods.
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