Causes of Heavy Menstrual Bleeding

There are several different causes of heavy menstrual bleeding.1,2 The most common of these are:

  • Hormonal Imbalance - An imbalance of estrogen and progesterone - hormones that control the build up and monthly shedding of endometrium, the inner lining of the uterus - can lead to heavy periods.

  • Uterine Fibroids and Polyps - These usually benign (noncancerous) growths can occur almost anywhere in the uterus. Fibroids and polyps may contribute to heavy periods.

  • Infection - Infections of the uterus and cervix may cause heavy bleeding.

  • Bleeding Disorders - Disorders that impair the blood from coagulating and clotting can result in excessive menstrual bleeding.1,3

  • Uterine Cancer - A rare, but potential cause of heavy bleeding. For this reason, your doctor will determine the cause of your heavy bleeding before deciding on a treatment option.

Your physician will best be able to determine what is causing your heavy menstrual bleeding.


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1 Osei, J. Menorrhagia, mechanisms and targeted therapies. Current Opinion in Obstetrics and Gynecology. 2005, 17: 411-418.

2 Burkman, R., Schlesselman, JJ., et al. Safety concerns and health benefits associated with oral contraception. American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology (2004) 190: S5-22.

3 Mayo Clinic information on Menorrhagia: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/menorrhagia/DS00394

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