Abnormal Uterine Bleeding

Many factors can cause abnormal uterine bleeding, and identifying the cause is critical for ensuring you receive the most appropriate and most effective treatment. As an experienced OB/GYN in Chicago and Downers Grove, Illinois, Dr. Valentin Tureanu has significant experience in innovative techniques used to diagnose and treat the causes of abnormal bleeding to help you lead a healthier life. If you have unusual uterine bleeding, call Dr. Tureanu or use our online system to schedule an office visit today.

Abnormal Uterine Bleeding

by Valentin Tureanu, MD, NCMP

What is considered abnormal uterine bleeding?

Abnormal uterine bleeding is any type of bleeding that occurs outside your normal menstrual period, including spotting between periods or periods that are unusually long, short, heavy, or light. A normal period lasts 4-7 days and occurs about every 28 days. Periods that regularly occur outside those normal ranges (for instance, less than every three weeks or more than every five weeks) typically are considered abnormal.

Occasional changes in menstruation can be caused by chronic stress or some illnesses, and usually, they’re nothing to worry about. But when abnormal bleeding occurs routinely or if you bleed between periods, you should see Dr. Tureanu for an evaluation to look for possible causes.

What are the main causes of abnormal uterine bleeding?

Abnormal menstrual bleeding often occurs during menopause as your body’s production of estrogen and progesterone naturally decline, and it can occur in puberty as well. Outside of these natural changes, other causes of abnormal uterine bleeding include:

  • Endometriosis
  • IUD problems
  • Birth control pills or changes in your method of contraception
  • PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome)
  • Thyroid disease
  • Substantial changes in your weight
  • Excessive exercise
  • Breastfeeding
  • Tumors
  • Uterine fibroids, polyps, and scarring (adhesions)

Determining the cause of your abnormal uterine bleeding is critical for ensuring you receive proper treatment.

How does the OB/GYN diagnose the cause of abnormal uterine bleeding?

Dr. Tureanu begins your diagnosis with a physical exam including a pelvic exam and a Pap smear, as well as a review of your symptoms and your medical history. He also often orders additional tests like blood tests and evaluations, ultrasound, or other diagnostic imaging, and sometimes he performs a simple exam called a colposcopy that uses a lighted magnifying device to evaluate your cervix. In some cases, he uses another exam called a hysteroscopy that relies on a special scope to look inside your uterus and your fallopian tubes.

What treatments are used for abnormal uterine bleeding?

That really depends on what’s causing your abnormal bleeding. For instance, abnormal bleeding caused by PCOS may be treated with hormone therapy to help rebalance normal hormone levels and support normal ovulation and menstrual cycles. When an underlying issues like fibroids, endometriosis, or polyps are causing problems with menstrual bleeding, you may need a minimally invasive procedure to remove abnormal tissue. In other cases, lifestyle changes like losing excess weight, managing your activity levels, or changing your birth control method can help. Dr. Tureanu will develop a treatment plan that’s optimized for your needs.

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