ABC Medical Center > Menorrhagia (heavy menstruation)

What is Menorrhagia (heavy menstruation)?

21:56 - 4 May , 2021


It is a pathology characterized by intense or long-lasting menstrual bleeding that prevents you from performing your daily activities normally due to the amount of blood you lose and the cramps you suffer. Menorrhagia can be caused by any of the following reasons:

  • Adenomyosis.
  • Uterine cancer.
  • Problems during pregnancy.
  • Hormonal alterations.
  • Ovarian dysfunction.
  • Having an intrauterine device.
  • Kidney and liver diseases.
  • Uterine fibroids.
  • Polyps.
  • Von Willebrand disease.
  • Use of anti-inflammatories, anticoagulants, or hormones.

Signs and symptoms Menorrhagia (heavy menstruation)

The characteristic symptoms consist of: 

  • Tiredness.
  • Anemia.
  • Release of large blood clots.
  • Completely wet feminine sanitary pads several times throughout the day.
  • Trouble breathing.
  • Reduction of daily activities due to heavy bleeding.
  • Have bleeding for more than a week.

If you suffer from heavy and prolonged menstrual bleeding, you must visit your doctor for evaluation, since menorrhagia can trigger other conditions, such as anemia and severe, disabling pain.

Diagnosis and treatment Menorrhagia (heavy menstruation)

Once your doctor analyzes your symptoms and clinical history, they will perform a physical examination and request blood tests to detect possible iron deficiency, blood coagulation, or thyroid problems, as well as the following tests:

  • Ultrasound.
  • Hysteroscopy.
  • Endometrial tissue sample to analyze in the laboratory.
  • Pap smear.
  • Sonohysterogram.

Once your doctor confirms the diagnosis, the indicated treatment will depend on the cause and severity, as well as your general health conditions, but usually includes:

  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs to reduce bleeding and menstrual cramps.
  • Iron supplements.
  • Birth control pills.
  • Progesterone.
  • Any of the following surgical procedures:
  • Endometrial ablation: which consists of removing the endometrium using laser, radiofrequency, or heat.
  • Concentrated ultrasound surgery: ultrasound waves seek to destroy the fibroid tissue.
  • Curettage: it is the most common. It consists of removing tissue from the uterus lining to reduce menstrual bleeding.
  • Uterine artery embolization: to reduce the size of uterine fibroids by blocking the uterine arteries and reducing blood supply.
  • Hysterectomy: to remove the uterus and cervix.
  • Myomectomy: to remove abundant and large fibroids, either by laparoscopy, hysteroscopy, or open surgery.

Comprehensive women’s health is our priority at the Women’s Center, so we offer services focused on women in all their chronological stages with the highest standards of care to improve their quality of life, through a wide range of prevention, diagnosis, timely treatment, and follow-up services.



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  • Jaramillo JLI, Martínez SLM, Tabares RMD. El papel de la enfermedad de von Willebrand en la hemorragia uterina anormal. Revista Cubana de Obstetricia y Ginecología. 2019;45(4):1-11.
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