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Brown vaginal discharge

In most cases the brown vaginal discharge is the indicator of old blood from endometrial tissues – old blood looks brown.

Brown discharge is normally just “old blood” that has been oxidized and left uterus and/or vagina late or later (not at the time of normal regular period).

During reproductive period almost all women experience brown vaginal discharge which could appear before or after period, during pregnancy, during contraception with birth control pills, during stress and/or late periods. But sometimes brown vaginal discharge could be a symptom of several hormonal dysfunctions and/or diseases and/or health conditions.

First time you can experience brown discharge during puberty – first period of female “hormonal storm”. Sometimes you can have few times brown discharge before your first period and sometimes your first period could look like brown vaginal discharge. It is a temporary situation and brown vaginal discharge will disappear once you start having normal regular menstrual periods.

Brown vaginal discharge

If you had late menstrual period or irregular periods, you could experience brown discharge. It could also means that for whatever reason during your last menstrual period the entire uterine lining failed to make a timely exit and remains in the uterus for some time. Later during uterus contractions and normal “cleaning out” you can notice the brown vaginal discharge.

Healthy women could experience 1-2 days brown vaginal discharge just before and/or after normal regular periods, sometimes during ovulation (in the middle of menstrual cycle) and/or during early pregnancy (instead of expected period).

Brown discharge can also be a symptom of a medical conditions including Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID), endometriosis, menopause, sexually transmitted diseases (gonorrhea, Chlamydia or genital warts) or cervical cancer. In most cases of mentioned conditions the brown discharge is combined with other symptoms.

If the cause of the brown 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 could be a symptom of several conditions:

Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)
Possible symptoms – History of pelvic infection; Abdominal pain; Possible high temperature; Loss of appetite; Fertility problems (infertility); Pain during vaginal test and/or vaginal intercourse and Brown discharge.

Genital warts (HPV)
Possible symptoms – History of unprotected sex; Vaginal lump; Cauliflower-like mass; Vaginal itching; Rash on genitals and Brown discharge.

Possible symptoms – History of unprotected sex; Pain; Mouth lesions; Feels hot to touch; Yellow vaginal discharge and Brown discharge.

Possible symptoms – Loss of appetite; Weight loss; Discharge from anus; Vaginal discomfort; Fertility problems (infertility) and Brown discharge.

Vulvovaginitis (vulvo-vaginal inflammation)
Possible symptoms – Pain in urethra; Yellow vaginal discharge; Vaginal dryness and Brown vaginal discharge.

Possible symptoms – Age after 45; Pain in urethra; Yellow vaginal discharge; Vaginal dryness and Brown vaginal discharge.

Hormonal dysfunctions and/or disbalance
Possible symptoms – Vaginal bleeding between periods; Obesity; Irregular periods; Weight change and Brown vaginal discharge.

Possible symptoms – Very painful periods; Fertility problems (infertility) and Spotting and/or Brown discharge before and after period.

Possible symptoms – Missed period; Pregnancy symptoms; History of unprotected sex and Unexpected brown vaginal discharge OR brown discharge instead of period.

Missed pills
Possible symptoms – Birth control pills user; History of missed pills and Chaotic spotting and/or brown vaginal discharge.

Possible symptoms – Chronic stress; Irritation; Sleeping problems; Increased sensitivity and Chaotic spotting and/or brown vaginal discharge.

Cysts, polyps (of cervix, vagina, or uterus), fibroids.
Possible symptoms – Diagnosed cysts, polyps and/or fibroids and Brown discharge (ofter after intercourse).

Intrauterine devices (IUDs)
Possible symptoms – Local infection or inflammation caused by the IUD;
Vaginal infections and Chaotic spotting and/or brown discharge.

Cervical cancer
Possible symptoms – Unexpected weight loss; Weakness; Pain during intercourse; Vaginal discharge; Vaginal pain and Brown discharge.

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  1. Hi. I was supposed to get my period last week but I’ve just been having brown discharge for about 5 days now. I’m 21 years old and usually get normal periods. This is the first time I’m experiencing this.

  2. Hi I grt normal periods in april I had Three day long bleeding but lighter then normall in may it started with Brown spot second day light bleeding and tgird brown spot again same thing happened in june whats going on I havebnever ever experience this.

    • possible causes – stress, birth control pills, hormonal dysfunction, perimenopause

  3. Hi I had protected sex a little over a week ago, it was 2 days after my period. The condom didn’t break (i checked) but it has been nine days since it happened and i am experiencing cramps and pinkish brown discharge when I wipe. My period should be here in 2 weeks, but I am freaking out about if I’m pregnant or not. Like what is the condom slipped off or some cum accidentally got into my vag. I am a wreck…help

    • chances for pregnancy almost zero – first of all, you had sex on not very fertile day – secondly you are experiencing cramps and discharge in the middle of cycle (looks like ovulation symptoms) – better check your most secure days for future – check “Rhythm method” in – //

  4. I’m on ghe depo provera shot. Therefore I’m going on week 4 of my period. Started out brownish I decided that was “old blood” since it turned into a normal but long period. Now it is brown discharge. Not blood tho. Going on day 3 pf this on 4th week. I know I should talk to my doctor but last time they just gave me estrogen and sent me on my way. Still having issues tho.

  5. Thanks for the reply doctor. I appreciate it. But today 8/12/15 i discharged heavy red blood just like in a normal menstruation and i found no brown blood in it. I also frequently sufder from mild to painful stomach ache . what could this be?

  6. I was on bcp’s for 12 years and went off of them 10 months ago. My periods have been 7-10 days late each time (I did totally skip one month though a few months back) and last for pretty much a week with the first few days being insanely heavy and the last few being very light where the blood is dark brown, almost black and thick. This time I was nine days late and from the first day it has been the brown thick light bleeding that I normally just get towards the end. Also, I should mention, the way I feel, cramps, bloating, backache feels like how I feel when I have my period. Is this normal? Is this actually my period? Or when this is over should I expect to get my period? Is this residual blood because I have been getting it late? I have not had sex since being off the pill so there is no chance I am pregnant or have an std. Any ideas? Should I be concerned or just wait and see how next month goes? Thanks so much! I appreciate and await your expert advice.

  7. Hi. I’ve had a miss period and I expeienced a yeast infection the week I was expecting it to begin, and now I’m producing a lot more discharge than normal, including shades of: light light yellow, egg white, and a barely-there brown. This corcerns me because I had sex 15 days after my period, with a condom, but the condom had broke. Though he pulled out, I wanted to be safe so I took a Plan B pill. Could this be the cause of my yeast infection, missed period, and abmornal discharge? Or could I be pregnant? With all the precautions that were there, should I be worried?