If you’re experiencing abnormal uterine bleeding outside of your regular period, it’s important that you pay attention. Abnormal bleeding may occur for a number of harmless reasons, but it can also be an indication something is going wrong.
At Alpha OBGYN, Sowmya Reddy, MD, knows it can be frightening to notice any changes in your period, especially heavy bleeding or longer periods than usual. To protect your reproductive and overall health, Dr. Reddy recommends a diagnostic evaluation any time you experience abnormal uterine bleeding.
You may bleed between your periods or for longer than usual for a variety of reasons. It’s possible that your bleeding issues are the result of a change in birth control pills or the use of an intrauterine device (IUD). Abnormal bleeding may also be caused by being overweight.
Many older women experience changes in their period as their transition to menopause starts. As early as your 40s, you may notice your periods become heavier, lighter, or don’t occur at all as you head toward menopause, the time when your periods stop for good.
Underlying medical conditions can also cause abnormal uterine bleeding. Some of the most common causes of abnormal bleeding include:
Reproductive cancers, including ovarian, cervical, and uterine cancer, can also lead to abnormal bleeding.
Because abnormal bleeding can be a warning sign of cancer and other serious conditions, it’s important that you don’t ignore it. Dr. Reddy offers comprehensive diagnostic testing and treatment services to resolve bleeding and protect your reproductive health.
To determine why your periods have changed or you’re experiencing abnormal bleeding between your periods, Dr. Reddy offers several in-office diagnostics.
During a pelvic exam, Dr. Reddy can identify structural abnormalities and large fibroids or polyps that may be affecting your periods. Ultrasound technology is also available to locate smaller growths she can’t see clearly.
A hysteroscopy is another diagnostic technology Dr. Reddy uses to evaluate the health of your uterus. This minimally invasive procedure, performed in the hospital as an outpatient procedure, uses special lighted scope to get a close-up view of your uterus.
To determine if the cause of abnormal bleeding is an underlying infection, a simple vaginal swab will be performed.
Treatment options for abnormal bleeding
The team at Alpha OBGYN customizes a care plan for abnormal bleeding. If your birth control is to blame, Dr. Reddy can recommend other options for preventing pregnancy.
If you have an underlying hormone imbalance, you may be a candidate for hormone therapy using synthetic hormones-also known as birth control pills- to rebalance your natural hormone levels.
When polyps or fibroids are large enough to interfere with your periods, you may need a minimally invasive surgery to remove them. If you’re done having children, Dr. Reddy may suggest endometrial ablation, a minimally invasive procedure to remove the lining of your uterus to treat heavy bleeding. These procedures are performed in the hospital under sedation.
For women who have severe uterine bleeding that’s not treatable with other therapies, Dr. Reddy may recommend a hysterectomy to remove your uterus and possibly your ovaries and fallopian tubes.
To schedule a diagnostic evaluation for heavy bleeding or other changes with your period, call Alpha OBGYN or request an appointment online today.