What is menorrhagia?
Menorrhagia is a common disorder in women. Menorrhagia is the medical term for menstrual bleeding lasting for longer than 7 days. About 1 in every 20 women has menorrhagia.
Some of the bleeding can be very heavy, meaning you would change your tampon or pad after less than 2 hours. It can also mean you pass clots the size of a quarter or even larger.
If you are experiencing weakness and a disruption to everyday life due to heavy bleeding, you should ask your doctor for treatment options.
What are the signs and symptoms of menorrhagia?
Signs of menorrhagia include:
- Soaking 1 or more tampons or pads every hour for many consecutive hours
- Doubling up on pads
- Changing pads or tampons during the night
- Long-lasting menstrual periods (longer than 7 days)
- Blood clots the size of a quarter or larger
- Bleeding that is keeping you from doing normal activities
- Constant pain in lower part of stomach
- Lacking energy
- Shortness of breath
What causes menorrhagia?
Menorrhagia can be caused by uterine problems, hormone problems or other illnesses. Other causes include:
- Growths or tumors of the uterus that are not cancer
- Cancer of the cervix or uterus
- Particular types of birth control
- Pregnancy-related problems (miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy, when the fertilized egg implants outside the uterus)
- Bleeding disorders
- Liver, kidney or thyroid disease
- Pelvic inflammatory disease (and infection of the female reproductive organs)
- Taking certain drugs, such as aspirin
- The menopause transition, also referred to as perimenopause
- Fibroids or polyps in the lining or muscle of the womb