Abnormal vaginal bleeding, whether it’s heavy periods or bleeding in the middle of your cycle, can be very disruptive to your life. The providers at Capital Women's Care Howard County located in Fulton, Maryland, offer compassionate diagnosis and effective treatment for your vaginal bleeding.
What is abnormal vaginal bleeding?
There is a huge variation in what can be described as a normal period, both in the length of the cycles and the amount of menstrual flow. In fact, not only are your cycle and symptoms different from your sisters’ and friends’ but they may change from year to year.
As a result of this natural variance, medically, abnormal vaginal bleeding is identified by the length of time it takes to saturate a sanitary product. For example, if you need to change your tampon more than once an hour for several consecutive hours, your period is considered abnormally heavy. Severe menstrual cramping that prevents you from going to work, school, or social events is also a sign of abnormal vaginal bleeding.
If you bleed heavily for more than seven days, your period may also be considered abnormal. Similarly, if you experience bleeding between periods, whether it’s light spotting or more like a period, it’s considered abnormal.
What are some of the conditions that cause abnormal vaginal bleeding?
The number of different conditions that can lead to abnormal bleeding range from fertility and reproductive issues to endocrine disorders and cancer. Some of the more common conditions that cause abnormal bleeding include:
Certain sexually transmitted diseases (STDs)
Uterine or cervical polyps
Polycystic ovarian syndrome
Cancer of the reproductive organs
How are these conditions treated?
Treatment for abnormal vaginal bleeding depends entirely on the condition causing your symptoms. At Capital Women’s Care, your doctor provides a comprehensive exam and consultation, which may include blood work and a pelvic exam to identify your condition.
Some conditions respond well to medical treatment like nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories that can reduce the volume of blood loss for some women. If you have an STD, you may benefit from an antibiotic and other medications. Other conditions benefit from hormonal contraceptives.
However, in other cases, a surgical procedure may be needed to address the root cause of your bleeding. Endometriosis, for example, is often addressed with endometrial ablation treatments that destroy the lining of your uterus. If you have fibroids, your doctor may suggest a myomectomy to remove them surgically.