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BROWN DISCHARGE

Brown Discharge is one of common concerns of girls and women. Not all cases of brown vaginal discharge are cause for concern. Brown vaginal discharge is most often associated with old endometrial tissues.

Once you start puberty a white and/or clear discharge is normal. The vagina is self-cleaning. This same discharge increases the closer you get to ovulation and when you are sexually aroused. You can have this normal discharge for weeks, months or even years before getting your first period. It will also continue after you get your period. Sometimes you can have few times brown discharge before your first period. Your first period can look like this also.

If your period is late you might get a brown, rather than red, discharge. It could also mean that for whatever reason during your last menses the entire uterine lining failed to make a timely exit. Brown Discharge may happen right after periods, and is just “cleaning out” your vagina. Old blood looks brown. This may occur when you are ovulating in the middle of menstrual cycle.

Brown discharge

Brown discharge

Brown vaginal discharge can also be a symptom of a medical concern that is much more sinister than leftover endometrial cells. Some of these conditions include Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID), menopause, sexually transmitted diseases (gonorrhea, Chlamydia or genital warts) or cervical cancer.

If the brown vaginal discharge is a result of dysfunctional endometrial elimination your symptoms would likely be a later than usual period, if that.

Each of the other conditions mentioned have much more noticeable symptoms of their own in addition to brown discharge. Some of typical additional to brown discharge symptoms are: pain, discharge that is watery or yellowish, depression, vaginal dryness, pain during intercourse, frequent urination, infertility, dysfunctional uterine bleeding, burning, itching, rash, hot to touch, mouth ulcers, and loss of appetite.

If the cause of the brown vaginal discharge is simply old uterine cells, then the treatment may be simple life style suggestions such as better nutrition, regular exercise and drinking more water. If you discover that the brown discharge is a result of another condition, better visit your doctor.

Brown Discharge – symptom of different diseases

If you have Loss of appetite, Fertility problems, Infertility, Abdominal pain and Brown vaginal discharge – you could have Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID).

If you have Vaginal lump, Cauliflower-like mass, Vaginal itching, Rash on genitals and Brown vaginal discharge – you could have Genital warts.

If you have Pain, Mouth lesions, Feels hot to touch, Yellow vaginal discharge and Brown vaginal discharge – you could have Gonorrhea.

If you have Loss of appetite, Weight loss, Discharge from anus, Fertility problems and Brown vaginal discharge – you could have Chlamydia.

If you have Pain in urethra, Yellow vaginal discharge, Vaginal dryness and Brown vaginal discharge – you could have Vulvovaginitis (vulvo-vaginal inflammation).

During Menopause you also could have Pain in urethra, Yellow vaginal discharge, Vaginal dryness and Brown vaginal discharge.

Brown vaginal discharge often could be a symptom of several hormonal dysfunctions (natural or provoked by hormonal medication and hormonal contraception).

If you have Spotting and/or Brown vaginal discharge before and after period – you could have Endometriosis.

Unexpected brown vaginal discharge OR brown discharge instead of period could be the first symptom of pregnancy.

Missed pills, Local infection or inflammation caused by the IUD, Vaginal infections, Stress, Cysts, Polyps (of cervix, vagina, or uterus), Fibroids also could trigger Chaotic spotting and/or brown vaginal discharge.

If you have Pain during intercourse, Vaginal discharge, Vaginal pain and Brown vaginal discharge – you could have Cervical cancer.

54 Comments

  1. I have brown vaginal discharge but I have no pains what so ever. Could I be pregnant?

  2. I have now had brown discharge for a week the week before that I had my menstrual. I had my last child 4yrs ago and had my tubes tied after my last child. So that being said I know it’s not pregnancy. I have no pain & no odor.. I have had pre cancerous cells before could it have came back full on cancer and that be the cause?

  3. i have brown discharge with unpleasant odor and and a slight pain. Sometimes the discharges looks like penkish color. My period finished 10 days now and am really worried.

  4. Hi my period just went off a week ago an 3 days afther that I stated cramping an I stated spotting this dark red brown looking it’s been going on for 3 days now should I b worried

    • could be ovulation discharge or uterus “extra-cleaning” after cramps=contractions

  5. Just after my period ended I noticed a light yellow discharge and I thought it’s not important then it turned into a dark brown discharge, mostly clotted with vulva itching, redness and dryness just on the top and not inside. I also noticed acne like pimples on vulva. I don’t feel comfortable wearing panties now and whenver I wipe there is always a brown discharge either clots or liquid. It has been a week, am not sexually active for over a month now and am married (away for study purpose). I put olive oil or sesame oil for moist and to relief itching. I also feel like period cramps. No pain while urinating nor any other pain. What could this be?

    • looks like vaginal infection

  6. dear dolly,

    having light bloody with some tissues coming for more than a year , have been visited medical and did scanning, all clear, very frightened, what it could be

  7. I had o on may 5 2015…my last period 4/19/2015….I started spotting watery brownish discharge on and off all day mostly when I had wiped…light bleeding no clots

    • stress? pregnancy? infection?

  8. I habe been having light brown watery discharge last 3 days on and off, period is due tomorrow. Also very minor left sided cramping. We had a miscarriage back in September and have been ttc since. Could I be pregnant even though test yesterday said negative? Please help im so anxious!

  9. I usually don’t like to look on the Internet for things but I haven’t had time to go to the dr… so I started my period mothers day and it lasted maybe 5 to 7 days. A few days later I started having brown discharge. It has almost been a month and it’s still there. I only have one partner. Some times it seems heavy and sometimes it’s very light. It also kinda of looks creamy sometimes. I have had endometerosis before and had it removed. This has never happened before… any ideas
    I’m scared it could be cervical cancer ot something

  10. I started my period on mothers day.. over a month ago. And I had a normal period and a few days after it stopped I started spotting brown. I wasn’t to worried at forst. But now it is still going on. I have had endo before and had surgery about 5 years ago. I do have some cramping on and off I get the sudden urge to pee and gotta pee right away but it’s not uncomfortable. It hurts to have sex for me all the time any way. It seems heavier some days and sometimes it kind of seems creamy… no smell at all… please help

  11. I started spotting 9days late and have very strong constant pelvic pain and nausea and light headedness. What could it be

  12. I am in menopause and just noticed some brown spotting and clear fluid discharge, I have read this may be normal. Should I go to the doctors?

  13. My normal period lasts for around 5 days. But this time it’s around 10. I’ve noticed an odorless, brown discharge. It’s light and there is no pain caused by it. Its just there. Ive heard it’s ”old blood” being cleaned from the body but can this go on for around a week? Its really troublesome and very concerning. Any help please?

    • you are right – it could be just old blood cleaning – causes could be stress, weight changes, physical exercises; don’t worry

      • When should I go see a doctor about it? It doesn’t seem to be stopping, but maybe getting lighter. It’s still a little worrying. And is it normal? It’s going on around 12 days now.

      • Thanks for your input! It relieves a ton of stress. When should I start to be concerned about it? It’s been around maybe 12 days. There is still no pain but it does seem to be lighting up a bit and there is still no pain.

        • if the cause of it would not disappear – it will stay; try to identify the real cause of it; in normal situation (after stress, after pressure, etc.) it will disappear after few weeks; if not – go to your gynecologist.
          REMEMBER – more worries=more stress=more problems

  14. HI
    I have PCOS and never have “normal menses”. I have in the past had brown discharge which goes away after a couple days. I now have a light brown then bright pink discharge only when wiping x 2 weeks. No pain no discomfort just the discharge. I am on antibiotics and they have not done a thing. HELP…..

  15. I’ve been on depo contraceptive for 6 months now, yesterday I started having cramps like period paids with brown discharge. What could be the problem

  16. My period was normal at first and then I noticed a brown/sometimes red discharge. It lasted for a few days (nearly a week now) but now it seems like its back to my normal period? I’m not to sure whats going on. I have experienced what seemed like light cramping but i’m not to sure. I’m not pregnant, sexually active or on any birth control but I have been a bit stressed lately.

    • avoid stress, take care of your normal weight, be physically active and everything will be OK

  17. I had my period from June 2 to June 6. I had unprotected sex on June 9 and took a plan b pill the next day. I felt fine at first but my stomach has felt crampy and I go to the bathroom more frequently (about 4-5 times a day). Today (exactly a week after unprotected sex) I discovered brown discharge and minor pelvic discomfort after I finished peeing. The discharge feel and smells like I’m about to start my period again (my cycle is very irregular). Is this a sign pregnancy or an std? Side effects from the plan b? Please help

  18. hi my period came 9 days late then ihave brown discharge thigh and leg pain, ovary pain, watering discharge again

  19. I’ve been on the depo shot since November and have gotten it on time ever since. My bf and I had unprotected sex because we thought it was safe. It’s been about a month since we last had sex, and for the past week I’ve felt like I’m gaining weight in my lower abdomen. My doctor put me on a Z Pak on Monday for a sinus infection and I’m wondering if it’s messing with my shot? I started having brown discharge (slight, not heavy) last night and I noticed brown fleshy tissue in my urine tonight. I’ve had it when I’ve had a UTI before, but I have no burning when I pee. Just the urge to go (especially at night). Every time I’ve had a UTI I’ve had terrible burning. Could it be a UTI, just old blood (I haven’t had a period since November) or pregnancy?

  20. I just experienced a very light period for about 10 days. The period was so light. My period went off yesterday morning and today I experienced a slimy dark brown discharge. It was no smell to the discharge. Can you help please

    • stress or pregnancy?

  21. I just had a 5 or 6 day period and it was very light and a brownish red. I now have smelly brown discharge but no cramps or nausea. My period is irregular but always have been. This past week I have been having a hard time eating and sleeping as well. Help please?

  22. Dark brown discharge. No smell. I’m not currently on my cycle either.

  23. I recently have been having a dark brown, clotty and watery discharge. I have not been sexually active for two months. I’ve had normal periods but every few days I have the discharge, mostly when I wipe. I don’t have any pain or other symptoms, should I be concerened??

    • everything has a reason – stress? vaginal infection? hormonal disturbances? pills?

      • I recently came home from college and have been babysitting 7 hours a day? I am not on any medication or birth control.

        • most probably too much stress (overwork) – take some nice holidays

  24. Hi, Im 19 years old and Ive always had regular periods but it became irregular after my I had sex for the first time at age 17. I didnt have my period for almost 10 months.For those 10 months I had been spotting (brown discharge)almost everyday. I wasnt pregnant nor did I have any sti’s because I got tested many times to make sure since I was freaking out and we used protection. Then after those 10 months passed I had sex for the second time (age 18) and I had my period shortly after that. It was regular for a couple months then it disappeared. Once again I began spotting and having brown discharge. I would realize that sometimes I would bleed but it wasnt like my period. Then in April I got the heaviest and longest period (lasted 2 weeks and it normally lasts 5 days & I had to change my tampon almost every 2 hours). I thought after that it would finally go back to normal but I havent got it since! Its going to be 3 months since my last period and since Ive been having spotting and having brown discharge. I havent been sexually active for almost two years and I havent been pregnant! Im really starting to freak out and don’t know whats going on!
    I’d really appreciate your input and thoughts Dr!

  25. I had flu and was taking antibiotics a few days after i finished the antibiotics. I noticed a slight discharge and when i go to the loo it burns. i now have a very red vulva and it’s like there is cuts cause i am even scared to go to the loo the way it burns

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