Menstruation News

Menstruation refers to the bleeding that is part of a woman’s monthly period. During menstruation, a woman’s body sheds the lining of the uterus and passes it from the body through the vagina. Typically, menstruation lasts from three to five days each month.

Complications of Menstruation

Though menstruation is routine and uneventful for most women, it can cause unpleasant complications.

Some women experience pain and cramps, known as dysmenorrhea, during menstruation. In many cases, this occurs because the woman’s body has too much of the chemical prostaglandin. In other cases, related diseases like endometriosis and uterine fibroids can lead to the pain and cramping.

Some women also experience bleeding between periods, after sex, after menopause or with a heavier flow than normal. Other women may not experience a period when they should — and also are not pregnant. These situations are worth a trip to the doctor, as a variety of underlying causes can be related to changes to the menstrual cycle.


Menstruation is managed by most women by using a pad or tampon to soak up the menstrual blood. How often to change the pad or tampon will vary from woman to woman, but it's recommended that tampons be changed at least every four to eight hours to prevent a complication known as toxic shock syndrome.

Most cases of cramping and pain during menstruation can be treated with over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen, ketoprofen or naproxen. Stronger prescription medication is available when these medications do not provide sufficient relief.

SOURCES: Office on Women's Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Date Posted
Article Title
Type 2 diabetes and menstruation

How type 2 diabetes effects girls' menstruation.

8 Ways College Women Can Protect Their Health

Awareness and follow-up are keys to avoiding gynecologic problems, expert advises

Are Her Chocolate Cravings a Product of the Culture?

These premenstrual urges seem far more common among U.S. women than others, study suggests

Does Early Puberty Affect a Girl's Academic Achievement?

Those who begin their periods younger may leave school sooner, research suggests

Breast-Feeding Lowers Mom's Breast Cancer Risk: Study

It also reduces the child's future cancer risk, cancer institute reports

Estrogen May Influence Women's Depression Risk

Early menstruation, more frequent periods seem to make sad times less likely, researchers suggest

No Such Thing as Menstrual Memory Fog

Changes in hormones don't seem to affect the female brain, small study finds

Menstruation and Brain Power

Does having your period negatively impact brain performance?

Concussion Can Spur Short-Term Change in Women's Periods

Odds of abnormal menstrual bleeding jump 6 times after serious head injury, study says

Timing of Menopause May Affect Heart Failure Risk

Women whose periods end early and those who never give birth seem at added risk, research suggests

Premature or Early Menopause More Likely in Women Without Kids: Study

Odds also greater if monthly periods started at 11 or younger, researchers say

Lower-Income Girls in U.S. Feel Unprepared for Puberty

Doctors, families should talk more about what to expect, researchers say

Genes May Play Role in More Severe Form of PMS

Study adds to evidence of a biological cause of condition, researchers say

Know Your Risk for Ovarian Cancer -- and the Symptoms

Because early signs are often easy to ignore, 140,000 women worldwide die of the disease every year

Later Start, Finish to Menstruation May Extend Women's Lives

Those with this pattern were more likely to live past 90, study suggests

3 Health Issues That Can Threaten Young Female Athletes

Pediatricians' group urges members to watch out for the 'female triad'

Base Quit-Smoking Day on Menstrual Cycle?

Women may find it easier to say no after ovulation, study says

Could PMS Raise Women's Risk for High Blood Pressure?

Study found rise in odds for hypertension in those with moderate-to-severe premenstrual syndrome

Giving Birth, Breast-feeding May Help Women's Long-Term Health

Researchers find link between childbirth and lower risk of death from cancer or heart disease

Genes Help Set Menopause Timing: Study

Findings might one day lead to fertility predictions, experts say

Women's Faces Are Redder During Ovulation, Study Says

But these subtle changes aren't detectable to the human eye

Menopausal Women's Sleep May Suffer at Different Times of the Month

Hormonal fluctuations during menstrual cycle are to blame, study says

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Linked to Early Menopause: CDC

Disorder also associated with other menstrual problems and pelvic pain, study finds

Soda Habit May Prompt Early Puberty in Girls, Study Suggests

Early menstruation a risk factor for depression and breast cancer, researchers say

Female Hormone Disorder Linked to Numerous Health Conditions

Study found women with polycystic ovary syndrome more likely to be hospitalized for variety of reasons

Could Quitting Smoking Be Easier for Women Just After Ovulation?

Hormonal fluctuations might play a role in cravings, researchers say

Timing of First Period Tied to Women's Later Heart Risk: Study

Getting it earlier or later raised chances of trouble, experts think childhood obesity might be at play

Study Ties Teen Smoking to Risk of Severe Menstrual Cramps

Tobacco use known to restrict blood flow, researchers say

Gene Study Gives New Insight Into Puberty in Girls

Findings may also provide clues on biology of diseases, such as type 2 diabetes, researcher says

Migraines May Worsen During Menopause

Women in perimenopause, menopause have more migraines than premenopausal women, study finds

PMS Not Linked to Hot Flashes Later, Study Finds

But, women with PMS are more likely to have memory, concentration issues after menopause

Bleeding Irregularities Common in Menopause, Study Finds

Report should reassure women at this stage of life, researcher says

Irregular Periods May Be Risk Factor for Ovarian Cancer, Study Suggests

Preliminary finding might eventually offer clue to which women would benefit from early screening

Sleep During the Day May Throw Genes Into Disarray

Study might explain why health problems are more common among night workers

Viagra for Menstrual Cramps?

In preliminary study of 25 women, those getting the drug reported greater pain relief

Time of Month May Affect Women's Concussion Recovery

Small study found those injured during 2 weeks before menstrual period healed more slowly

Earlier Onset of Periods May Not Mean Earlier Sex

Girls who start menstruating before age 12 no more sexual than later bloomers, study finds