Abnormal Uterine Bleeding: When to Worry

The gynecologist examines the patient. Abnormal uterine bleeding generally means bleeding outside your “normal” cycle and can also be called “anovulatory bleeding” or “irregular period.” But like many things in life, the definition of normal periods is on a spectrum. No two people’s experiences are exactly alike.

With that said, you know what your period feels and acts like month to month. It’s important to be observant, so you realize when something is different.

Abnormal Uterine Bleeding: What to Watch for

Pay attention if you experience:

  • Heavier than normal period, which could be more heavy days than usual
  • Bleeding a little or a lot between periods, after sex, or after you’ve started menopause, which is defined as not having had a period for one year
  • A period lasts longer than seven days
  • A period only lasts two days or less.
  • Cycles suddenly become irregular by more than a week (e.g., 27 days, then 18 days, then 45 days)

To clarify, blood loss during a period is believed to be two to three tablespoons. Like cycles, this is on a spectrum, so if you’re bleeding more than five tablespoons, that could be considered abnormal.

If you have already passed the menopause milestone and take hormones, know that it is not normal to bleed.

Ultimately, it’s time to speak with a doctor if you feel something is abnormal based on your experience or if the variance in your period is negatively impacting your life. Abnormal bleeding could lead to low iron (anemia) or trouble getting pregnant (if that’s your goal).

Causes of Irregular Periods

Hormones regulate periods, so an unusual hormone change is the most common reason for sudden irregularity. These changes can happen because of:

  • Birth control, hormone therapy, or blood thinning medications
  • Fast weight loss or gain
  • Excessive emotional or physical stress
  • An intrauterine device (IUD)
  • Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)
  • Polyps
  • Endometriosis
  • Infection in reproductive organs
  • Cancer
  • Disease of the thyroid, liver, adrenal glands, or kidneys
  • Blood disorders

If You’re Concerned, Speak with Your Doctor

If you’re worried about whether what you’re experiencing is normal, it’s time to speak to your doctor at Huey & Weprin Ob/Gyn in Kettering or Englewood, OH. Schedule a consultation by calling 937-771-5100 to speak with our friendly scheduling team.

Request an Appointment

* All indicated fields must be completed.
Please include non-medical questions and correspondence only.

Visit One of Our Convenient Locations

M-Th: 8am - 4pm
F: 9am - 3pm
Sat & Sun: Closed

Accessibility Toolbar