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Notes on Women's Health
Notes on Women's Health

Category: Conditions and Treatments

Bleeding During Early Pregnancy: What You Need To Know

Bleeding During Early PregnancyVaginal bleeding during your pregnancy can be pretty scary. It’s also very common. According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, bleeding during early pregnancy (first three months) happens to up to one of every four pregnant women.

Here at our practice, most of the questions we hear concerning bleeding during pregnancy come from first trimester patients, often over the phone or during prenatal care visits. Many of these women are worried about a miscarriage, which is defined as a pregnancy loss that occurs on its own, without any outside intervention. Read More

When Painful Menstrual Cramps Aren’t Normal

This is the fifth in a series of five blogs about conditions that can be related to abnormal uterine bleeding.

painful menstrual cramps

Mild vs. serious menstrual cramp pain

Most women experience mild to moderate menstrual cramping on occasion. When it occurs, the medical term for it is usually “primary dysmenorrhea,” which means painful menstrual cramps caused only by normal menstruation and not by an underlying condition or disease. Symptoms of normal primary dysmenorrhea can include pain that:

  • feels like mild to moderate cramps in your lower pelvis or back
  • occurs a day or two before your period or during the first few days of your period
  • is accompanied by mild nausea or diarrhea
  • doesn’t interfere with your daily activities
  • improves with one or two doses of ibuprofen

Primary dysmenorrhea is caused by the release of chemical compounds called prostaglandins in your uterus, and it often improves as you get older. Primary dysmenorrhea often responds well to prostaglandin-lowering treatments such as ibuprofen, magnesium and certain dietary changes. Read More

Taking Control of Heavy Menstrual Bleeding

heavy menstrual bleeding

This is the fourth in a series of five blogs about abnormal uterine bleeding.

What is normal menstrual bleeding and what isn’t?

Many of our patients experience abnormally heavy bleeding during their periods. In many cases, they suspect it’s not normal, but because they’re used to menstrual bleeding every month, they think that it’s just because of how their bodies are made, and that they just have to make some lifestyle adjustments.

Many women begin to experience heavy menstrual bleeding in their 30’s or 40’s, or when menopause is getting closer. Menstrual periods vary for each woman, so it may be hard to know what’s normal and what’s abnormal bleeding. But although there is no solid definition for abnormal bleeding amounts, you may be bleeding too much if you: Read More

Pelvic Inflammatory Disease Symptoms and When to be Concerned

This is the third in a series of five blogs about common conditions that can cause abnormal uterine bleeding.

pelvic inflammatory disease symptomsWhat is pelvic inflammatory disease?

Infections are never pleasant. They can cause pain, fever, chills, dizziness, fatigue and other symptoms. But when infections occur in your reproductive organs, they can be especially difficult. When your reproductive organs are subjected to bacteria from by a sexually transmitted disease, inflammation can occur. When it does, this condition is called pelvic inflammatory disease, or PID. If left untreated, pelvic inflammatory disease can interfere with your ability to have children: It’s the leading cause of preventable infertility in women. It’s also a rising concern at our practice, because we’ve seen higher-than-usual incidence of chlamydia, which is one of many sexually transmitted diseases that can lead to PID if untreated. Nationwide, the rates of chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis, which are the three most commonly reported sexually transmitted diseases in the United States, have reached record levels in recent years. And because many women are used to periodic pain or are too embarrassed to act, PID can be undiagnosed and untreated, which can lead to additional complications, such as internal scarring, ongoing pain, miscarriages and difficulty getting pregnant, so it’s imperative to understand pelvic inflammatory disease symptoms. Read More

Uterine Fibroids: Your Questions Answered

This is the second in a series of five blogs about common conditions that can cause abnormal uterine bleeding.

uterine-fibroids-woman-painUterine Fibroids: A common condition

Of every 10 women who come into our practice, seven of them will have uterine fibroids at some point in their lives. Uterine fibroids are that common. But despite their frequency, many women have questions about fibroids, especially when the condition affects quality of life or causes health issues. Here are answers to some of the fibroid questions we’re asked most often at our practice. Read More

Coping with Endometriosis

what is endometriosis - woman in pain

This is the first in a series of five blogs about common conditions that can cause abnormal uterine bleeding.

Many of our patients experience mild pain and cramping during their menstruation. But what about the patients who are forced to endure severe pain and discomfort, causing them to miss school and work on a monthly basis?

For many of these women, endometriosis is the cause.

The good news is that we are able to offer medical treatments and fertility-sparing surgical options that can alleviate endometriosis pain for most patients.

Read More

Abnormal Bleeding After Menopause: When to be Concerned

Woman on bed complaining of menopause bleeding & cramping You’ve made it through menopause. You’re done with the mood swings and the hot flushes, the fatigue and the cramping. And now, after decades of dealing with regular and irregular uterine bleeding, you’re settling into the latest phase of your body’s development, hopefully with a minimum of fuss. So what does it mean if you start bleeding again? Read More

Causes of Abnormal Bleeding Around Menopause: Navigating the Changes

Mature woman sitting on bed with manopause cramping and abnormal bleedingMenopause is the time in a woman’s life when the ovaries stop producing estrogen. If you’ve gone through 12 consecutive months without a menstrual period, it’s official: you’ve reached menopause. For about 40% of women, that’s all there is to it.

For the other 60% of women, the months or years leading up to menopause can bring a host of symptoms. Brought on by hormonal changes, the symptoms can include insomnia, fatigue, hot flashes, chest pain, cramping, moodiness, vaginal dryness, abdominal weight gain, a rapid or irregular heartbeat, a reduced sex drive, urinary incontinence, and abnormal uterine bleeding — that is, irregular or heavy bleeding. Or both. These changes can bring on confusion and anxiety, especially if you’re not expecting them at this point in your life. Read More

Abnormal Vaginal Bleeding During Your Reproductive Years: What You Need to Know

Woman experiencing abnormal bleeding and crampsOne of the most common reasons that patients come to our medical office in Norwalk is because they have questions or concerns related to abnormal vaginal bleeding. This isn’t really a surprise: About a third of all outpatient visits to gynecologists in the United States are for heavy period bleeding, an unusually long period, or unusual bleeding between periods. But even though it’s common, irregular bleeding can be a major cause for concern, especially during pregnancy. And despite its possible effects on a woman’s lifestyle and health, irregular bleeding can be something that patients overlook, especially if the increase in bleeding has occurred gradually. Read More

Leaking Urine? Urinary Incontinence

One of the most common complaints we see in clinical practice is urinary incontinence, or the involuntary leaking of urine. 

Many women are reluctant to discuss this complaint with their providers as they are embarrassed, are unaware that treatments exist, and/or fear surgery.  I commonly hear from my patients that they thought that leaking urine is “what happens as women age” and “normal after childbirth”.  While the prevalence of leaking urine does increase with age, we don’t consider this a normal symptom, and treatment does exist! Read More