Heavy menstrual period  is very common. It is not normal and can disrupt your life or be a sign of a more serious health problem. If you are concerned that your period is too heavy, talk to your  obstetrician–gynecologist (ob-gyn).
heavy menstrual bleeding


Menstrual bleeding is considered heavy when :

  • bleeding lasts  more than 7 days
  • bleedins soaks one or more pads  or tampons every hour for several hours in a row
  • need to change pad or tampons during the night
  •  need to wear more than one pad at a time to control menstrual flow
  • bleeding is accompanied by clots that are as big as a quarter or more

What are the causes of heavy menstrual bleeding ?


Heavy menstrual bleeding is caused by a lot of things , some of which include :

What is the treatment for heavy menstrual bleeding ?


Medications are first used to treat heavy menstrual bleeding  and include the following :

  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen or naproxen
  • oral contraceptives
  • oral progesterone
  • tranexamic acid
  • iron supplements
  • the hormonal IUD mirena

If you have heavy bleeding due to taking hormone medication, your doctor will treat it by changing medications or stopping the drug.


You may need  a surgical procedure if drug therapy doesnt work. These include the following :

  • Dilation and curettage (D&C) is a procedure during which  the doctor opens your cervix and then scrapes or suctions tissue from the lining of your uterus to reduce menstrual bleeding.
  • myomectomy which is involves the surgical removal of the uterine fibroids
  • uterine artery embolization which is done to to shrink any fibroids in the uterus by blocking the uterine arteries and cutting off their blood supply.
  • hysterectomy which is the surgical  removal of the uterus and cervix
  • endometrial ablation is when the doctor uses various techniques to permanently destroy the lining of the uterus
  • endometrial resection  uses an electrosurgical wire loop to remove the lining of the uterus
  • focused ultrasound embolization is also focused on shrinking the fibroids


Content Sources
Menorrhagia (heavy menstrual bleeding), Mayo Foundation. http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/menorrhagia/basics/definition/con-20021959. Accessed July 13, 2016

Heavy menstrual bleeding . American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. http://www.acog.org/Patients/FAQs/Heavy-Menstrual-Bleeding. Accessed July 13, 2016

Heavy Periods (Menorrhagia). WebMD. http://www.webmd.com/women/guide/heavy-period-causes-treatments .Accessed JuLY 13, 2016

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