Abnormal menopause bleeding is one of the most frequent complaints of women after 45-55. At the very early stages of menopause (called “perimenopause”) ovaries start producing less estrogen and progesterone which is the main reason for menstrual disturbances. Changes in menstrual cycle are most common symptoms of perimenopause and/or menopause – menstrual cycle could become irregular and unexpected uterine bleedings could appear. While woman is menstruating (even irregular, even bleeding), it is not considered as menopause but perimenopause.
If you have had even one period and it hasn’t been a year since then, you have not reached menopause – it means you are still in perimenopause.
If you have not had your period for a full year and then experience uterine bleeding, it is a warning signal and it would be strongly recommended to visit your doctor.
Menopause is defined as the absence of menstrual periods for 12 consecutive months.
Bleeding after menopause is never normal. Due to the decline in estrogen during menopause, the lining of the vagina becomes thin, dry and less elastic. This can lead to broken or inflamed vaginal tissue that may cause menopause bleeding.
Main causes of the menopause bleeding are hormonal changes. Besides reduced estrogen production, menopausal women did not produce enough progesterone and as a result ovulations stop and the special condition develop in menopausal women – called “estrogen dominance”. Symptoms of estrogen dominance during menopause include low sex drive, bloating and weight gain, headaches, mood swings, irregular periods and heavy bleeding. Menopause bleeding could be different in length/duration, volume of lost blood and in regularities (regular or unexpected). The bleeding can be lighter, heavier or your cycle may be quite erratic in length, intensity and duration.
Beside the hormone imbalance, certain medical conditions such as uterine fibroids, polyps, infection of the uterus, certain types of cancer can cause heavy bleeding during menopause.
Sometimes menopause women don’t know which kind of vaginal bleeding should be considered as menopause bleeding. Heavy bleeding that is excessive (soaking through several pads in an hour) or prolonged (more than 7 days) should be considered as menopause bleeding and should be treated by doctors.
Abnormal menopause uterine bleeding could have several causes:
One of the concerns of heavy bleeding is that you will become anemic (insufficient hemoglobin).
Persistent irregular bleeding can be a warning for detailed investigations and/or tests – better visit your gynecologist. Bleeding longer than 7 days each period, bleeding more often than every 21 days and skipping more than three cycles should be evaluated.
Some menopausal women have benign growths in the lining of the uterus that can get irritated or irritate the tissue around and it can cause menopause bleeding. Uterine fibroids can also cause menopause bleeding. But remember that menopause bleeding can be an indicator of serious cancer that could be a threat to your life in the long run.
During menopause bleeding some cancerous cells could be identified but these cells could be controlled if they are caught in time. BUT if you wait too long, these cells will multiply and begin to cause other cancers in the body. If you ignore the first simple signs like unusual unexpected menopause bleeding, you could be setting yourself up for a fall.
During menopause, it is thought that a woman will bleed on an occasional basis. Once she has finished menopause, though, bleeding, even erratic bleeding, is not considered normal.
Many women stop their yearly Pap test without any reason thinking that this essential exam is no longer necessary. Never stop Pap test in menopause! Just because you no longer have a period does not mean that you are no longer at risk for serious cancers like uterine or vaginal cancer. That is the primary reason for having your annual Pap test. Actually cancer prevention is very important during menopause.
Menopause Bleeding – what to do
Visit your doctor gynecologist
Check the cause of menopause bleeding
Black cohosh is a very popular herb women use to help alleviate many symptoms of menopause. Black cohosh can help with hot flashes and cramps. It’s also found to be effective to handle heavy menstrual bleeding during perimenopause/menopause. Black cohosh may even help prevent osteoporosis. Most research studies recommend you take black cohosh extract, and it may take two to four weeks before noticed results occur.
You can also try to drink green smoothies comprised of green vegetables such as kale, dandelion, spinach, parsley, celery, etc and fresh fruits like apples, mangoes, bananas, peaches, pears, etc. daily to stop heavy bleeding.
Use also pills for anemia as during menopause bleeding you could need it.
Menopause bleeding can be alarming for many women – menopause bleeding can be an indicator of serious cancer that could be a threat to your life in the long run.
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Disclaimer: It is strongly recommended to consult your doctor for professional advice. Above mentioned information and recommendations are just general and should be adapted to each person according to personal health indicators and status.