How do doctors deal with extreme bleeding
Excessive menstrual bleeding - when the days become a nuisance
What is an excessive menstrual period?
A woman loses approximately 60 milliliters of blood during a normal menstrual period. If the period is too heavy, it is over 80 milliliters, i.e. a third more. Do you change your tampon or sanitary napkin every two hours, do you feel weak and exhausted, or do you have blood clots in your menstrual blood? Then you may suffer from what is known as hypermenorrhoea, an excessively heavy menstrual period. If your period lasts longer than seven days, doctors speak of menorrhagia, a prolonged period.
Iron deficiency anemia can develop as a result of the high blood loss. The body is then supplied with too little oxygen, which makes you feel tired, listless and limp. In rare cases, hospital treatment is required because the blood loss is very high. Some women also have abdominal pain called dysmenorrhea.
Causes of profuse bleeding
The use of the IUD for contraception can increase menstrual bleeding. Births and hormonal changes, such as menopause, are also possible causes.
If the uterus cannot contract sufficiently, the bleeding will last longer and become heavier. A trigger for this can be myomas or polyps - these are benign tumors. A bleeding disorder, such as the rare congenital Von Willebrand syndrome, also causes heavy menstrual bleeding.
Your gynecologist can determine your hormone status and, if necessary, prescribe a birth control pill, an IUD or a hormone ring. They make menstruation shorter and milder. The targeted intake of progesterone in the second half of the cycle can inhibit the build-up of the uterine lining. The hormone helps make the bleeding slower.
If you prefer hormone-free therapy, pain relievers available without a prescription such as ibuprofen, diclofenac or paracetamol can help. They relieve pain and may also reduce blood loss at the same time. Medicines containing tranexamic acid reduce the tendency to bleed. However, these drugs should not be used for a long period of time. Talk to your doctor and follow the recommendations in the package insert.
ASA, acetylsalicylic acid, has an anticoagulant effect and is therefore not suitable for heavy menstrual bleeding.
If fibroids and polyps increase the bleeding, a mostly minimally invasive operation can be useful. In a so-called myomectomy, the doctor removes the benign growths from the abdomen or vagina.
If the treatment is unsuccessful, removal of the uterine lining or the entire uterus can be considered. With both procedures, menstruation does not occur and pregnancy is no longer possible.
What can I do myself?
Anything that helps you relax during your menstrual period can also have positive effects on your pelvic organs:
- Light stretching exercises and yoga loosen the entire musculature and mostly relax the abdomen as well.
- Take your day-to-day life a little easier. If you are mentally relaxed, this will automatically be transferred to your body.
- Eat a wholesome diet. Your body mainly needs iron and vitamin B12 for blood formation.
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