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Menstrual bleeding is a situation characterized by heavy and profuse bleeding during menstruation that can last more than 7 days, and may also be accompanied by other symptoms, such as pain in the intimate region, abdominal swelling and tiredness, for example..
Excessive menstrual bleeding, scientifically called menorrhagia, can be dangerous because it causes a sharp decrease in iron and anemia, reducing the amount of oxygen in the body. In addition, in some cases menstrual bleeding can be a sign of a more serious disease, such as cancer, for example.
Thus, in the presence of profuse bleeding, it is important that the gynecologist is consulted for an evaluation and exams are indicated to confirm the diagnosis and initiate the appropriate treatment.
Menstrual bleeding symptoms
The main symptom of menstrual bleeding is excessive blood loss that lasts longer than 7 days. However, symptoms other than bleeding may appear, such as:
- Pain in the intimate region;
- Presence of clots during menstruation;
- Abdominal swelling;
- Easy fatigue;
- There may be fever.
In addition, as the blood loss is very large, there is, consequently, a decrease in the amount of hemoglobin and iron, which can lead to the appearance of signs and symptoms of anemia, such as dizziness, pallor, pain headache, hair loss and lack of appetite, for example. Know how to recognize the symptoms of anemia.
How the diagnosis is made
The diagnosis of menstrual bleeding must be made by the gynecologist based on the evaluation of the signs and symptoms presented by the person, as well as through the analysis of the menstrual flow.In addition, to identify the cause of menstrual bleeding, the doctor may recommend carrying out laboratory tests, such as dosage of the female hormones progesterone, estrogen and LH, urinalysis, coagulogram and blood count, in addition to imaging tests, such as abdominal ultrasound and transvaginal. See which exams are recommended by the gynecologist.
Menstrual bleeding can have different causes and can happen to any woman, but it is more frequent in obese women, who are entering menopause or who have a family history of menstrual bleeding. The main causes of menstrual bleeding are:
- Modifications of the uterus, such as fibroids, polyps, adenomyosis and cancer;
- Changes in blood clotting;
- Hormonal problems such as hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism or lack of ovulation;
- Infection in uterus, urinary tract or bladder;
- Using oral contraceptives;
- Pregnancy or miscarriage.
When it is not possible to identify the cause of excessive bleeding, the woman can be considered to be suffering from dysfunctional uterine bleeding, in which there is no specific cause but which leads to uncontrolled growth of the uterine lining, causing bleeding and increasing the chances of developing endometrial cancer.
Treatment for menstrual bleeding
Treatment for menstrual bleeding depends on the cause of the excessive bleeding. Thus, in cases related to the production of hormones, the doctor may recommend the use of drugs to stop menstrual bleeding, such as oral contraceptives, in addition to recommending the use of iron and folic acid supplements and the insertion of an IUD, in some cases. If the bleeding is the result of an infection, the doctor may recommend the use of antibiotics.
In more serious cases, such as uterine fibroids or cancer, hysterectomy surgery may be indicated to remove part or all of the uterus. Understand how menstrual bleeding is treated.