The Causes and Treatment of Hypermenorrhea

June 18, 2019
Many women suffer from unpleasant and unexpected menstrual conditions. In today's article, we'll look at the causes and treatment of hypermenorrhea.

It’s something half the population experiences for a good part of their lives. For some women, it isn’t a problem, whereas others suffer from it. Of course, we’re talking about menstruation, the monthly “friend” that visits every woman. It’s possible to classify periods depending on how heavy or irregular they are. In this regard, in this article, we’ll be looking at the causes and treatment of hypermenorrhea, which is heavy menstrual flow.

We’ll also talk about its most common causes, treatments, and, most importantly, when you’ll need to go see your doctor.

What is Hypermenorrhea?

The term hypermenorrhea (from the Greek ὑπερ – hyper– meaning “very, very”) refers to the abundance of menorrhea or menstrual flow. People often use it as a synonym for menorrhagia, excessive bleeding that lasts longer than normal or that produces nearly 3 ounces in a single cycle (about six tampons a day).

However, it’s not always easy to pinpoint what exactly can be classified as “excessive” menstruation. Each woman knows her own monthly period. As long as it doesn’t occur unexpectedly or cause excessive pain or other kinds of conditions, then it can’t be classified as abnormal menstruation.

A woman with stomach pain.

Hypermenorrhea usually refers to excessive menstruation. If the cycles are also frequent and close together, then we would be talking about polyhypermenorrhea, which is synonymous with the two previous terms. Both cause tiredness and fatigue. This is often due to anemia due to the loss of iron caused by the excessive loss of blood.

It’s also important not to confuse hypermenorrhea with metrorrhagia, which is changes in menstrual flow not caused by menstruation. It occurs frequently after the menarche (first menstruation) or in an “adjustment” period in the menstrual cycle.

Causes and Treatment of Hypermenorrhea

The causes of hypermenorrhea are varied, depending on whether it’s an isolated event or a symptom of other illnesses. Whatever the case may be, it’s very important to go to see a specialist as soon as it happens.

Only a gynecologist can accurately diagnose the causes, which can range from uterine cancer to a hormonal imbalance.

The most common causes are:

  • Uterine fibroids. Benign tumors in the uterus that affect its musculature.
  • Polyps. Benign tumors that affect the surface of the endometrium, thereby increasing it.
  • Having had several pregnancies. The extension and contraction of the musculature of the uterus during and after pregnancy can cause a heavier flow. This is caused by a loss of strength in muscle tissue which, as a result, can prevent proper retention of bleeding.
  • Conditions related to incorrect blood coagulation. The difficulty or inability to coagulate blood correctly increases the menstrual flow.
  • Pelvic congestion syndrome. This condition involves the dilation of the pelvic venous vessels (pelvic varicose veins). It always manifests during menopause.
  • Uterine cancer. Although it’s less frequent, experts can detect it thanks to hypermenorrhea, which is one of its symptoms.

Treatment of Hypermenorrhea

Treatment for hypermenorrhea varies, depending on what’s causing it. For example, you wouldn’t treat cancer in the same way as fibroids. In addition, as we’ve already seen, although hypermenorrhea can be a disease in and of itself, at other times it manifests as a symptom of another condition.

Clinical treatments range from hormonal treatments, such as contraceptives, to surgical ones, such as ovary removal.

Doctors can also treat anemia, which often produces an increase in bleeding. Generally, the treatment will also involve analgesics, as hypermenorrhea is often accompanied by stomach pain.

However, it won’t always be serious. Because of that, you should go to the gynecologist before thinking that you might have a severe illness.

A woman with period pain.

Other Considerations

Only a specialist can diagnose this condition. Any increase in your menstrual flow shouldn’t necessarily be considered hypermenorrhea. It’s very important not to worry excessively. If only one of your menstrual cycles is abnormal, you shouldn’t be alarmed. Remember that menstruation is affected by many factors, from what you eat to your age.

On the other hand, you shouldn’t take things lightly when there’s a gradual increase in menstrual flow that happens frequently and doesn’t get any lighter. Although taking analgesics can relieve your pain, it won’t make the condition go away.

In short, it’s essential for you to be cautious and to visit your doctor if necessary. They‘ll be able to diagnose what’s happening and prescribe the most appropriate treatment.