The physicians at Center for Women’s Health are experienced in handling women’s gynecologic concerns with expert, compassionate care. We pride ourselves on remaining current with the latest advancements in the care of gynecologic issues whether it be use of medications or surgical intervention. Our physicians take time to review the available options and provide the information for you to make an informed choice regarding the best management for your particular need.
A normal period or menses on average begins between ages 12 and 13 in the United States. Cycles are often irregular through adolescence, but by the third year after menarche approximately 60–80% of cycles are 21–34 days long. After the onset of menarche, cycles should occur at least every 90 days. Menses on average last 3-5 days and should not have bleeding requiring the use of more than 12 tampons or pads daily.
When should I see a doctor about my period?
- You have not started menstruating by the age of 15.
- Your period suddenly stops for more than 90 days.
- Your periods become very irregular after having had regular, monthly cycles.
- Your period occurs more often than every 21 days or less often than every 35 days.
- You are bleeding for more than 7 days.
- You are bleeding more heavily than usual or using more than 1 pad or tampon every 1 to 2 hours.
- You bleed between periods.
- You are having bleeding after menopause.
- You have severe pain during your period.
- You suddenly get a fever and feel sick after using tampons.
Common Gynecologic Problems
Heavy Periods (Menorrhagia) is bleeding that is affecting your lifestyle. Bleeding for more than 7 days or bleeding through a pad or tampon more frequently than every 2 hours is considered to be a heavy period. Feeling exhausted; unable to leave your house; unable to do the activities that you desire during your cycle is not normal. See your physician to discuss options of management.
Abnormal Uterine Bleeding (AUB) is bleeding between your normal cycles. Bleeding that occurs closer than 21 days apart, bleeding with activity, bleeding after intercourse, and bleeding after menopause are all indications that you should see your physician to discuss management options.
Uterine Fibroids (Leiomyomas) are common muscular tumors that grow in the wall of the uterus. They are usually benign (not cancerous). They most often occur between the ages of 30 and 50.
Some of the common symptoms of fibroids include:
- heavy periods; bleeding between periods
- a feeling of fullness
- pain with intercourse
- urinating frequently
- back pain
- difficulty with fertility or during pregnancy
There are surgical and medical options for managing fibroids. Schedule an appointment with your physician to discuss any of these symptoms.
Pelvic Pain is pain below a woman's belly button. It is considered chronic (which means long-lasting) if you have had it for at least 6 months. The type of pain varies from woman to woman. In some women, it is a mild ache that comes and goes. In others, the pain is so steady and severe that it makes it hard to sleep, work, or enjoy life.
If your doctor can find what's causing the pain, treating the cause may make the pain go away. If no cause is found, your doctor can help you find ways to ease the pain and get back your quality of life.
Endometriosis is when the lining of the uterus is found growing in the pelvis or abdomen. It typically causes pain with cycles and may also cause pain at other times. The diagnosis can only be made with surgery.
However, patient history, imaging such as ultrasound, and pelvic exam may all play an important part in the diagnosis of endometriosis. There is no cure for endometriosis, but there is treatment that is available that may help with symptoms. Call now to schedule an appointment with your physician.
Vaginal Discharge is perfectly normal most of the time. The amount can vary, as can odor and hue (its color can range from clear to a milky white-ish), depending on the time in your menstrual cycle.
For example, there will be more discharge if you are ovulating, breastfeeding, or are sexually aroused. The smell may be different if you are pregnant or you haven't been diligent about your personal hygiene. None of those changes is cause for alarm.
However, if the color, smell, or consistency seems significantly unusual, especially if it accompanied by vaginal itching or burning, you could be noticing an infection or other condition. Call your physician to have this evaluated.
Pelvic Organ Prolapse occurs when the muscles and ligaments supporting a woman's pelvic organs weaken, allowing the uterus, bladder, vagina or rectum to slip out of the normal location. This condition may occur due to heredity, having babies, hormone status and age. The symptoms produced by pelvic organ prolapse may include:
- pelvic pain
- pelvic pressure or heaviness
- bearing down sensations
- feeling as if organs are going to fall out or feeling a bulge
- low back pain
- loss of urine with coughing, laughing, sneezing, exercising
- difficult bowel movements
There are multiple approaches to treatment including both non-surgical and surgical options. Diagnosis is based on examination by one of our physicians, all of whom have extensive experience in managing these conditions. If you are experiencing symptoms of pelvic organ prolapse, call to schedule a visit with your physician today.