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Sue
Sue, Acupuncturist and Herbalist
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 10
Experience:  Licensed in two States
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headaches..For the last 4 months my periods have been irregular

Customer Question

I am 34 years old with normal weight and have 3 children. I am not on any prescription medication, but I occasionally take ibuprofen for headaches. For the last 4 months my periods have been irregular. First my period was 23 days appart, twice it has been 10 days apart, 17 days apart. My latest period was actually 29 days apart, but lasted 15 days, stopped for 2 days and now I have been bleeding for 9 days. The periods start very light with about 2 days of heaviness and then are light for the durartion. I am not having many cramps, but sometimes I do feel sick to my stomach. What are some possible causes?
Submitted: 11 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Sue replied 11 years ago.
HiCustomer

1/ Please check yourself for pregnancy.


If that is ruled out, it could be a few things.

Before 4 months ago, how long had it been before you were pregnant or mnursing? Was your last pregnancy a miscarriage, an abortion or baby? When was the last time you were pregnant or nursing? When was the last time that you had a pelvic exam? Do you have a history, that you know, of uterine fibroids?

Do you have a discharge when you are not menstruating? If so, is it cloudy or an odor or itch present?

Are you taking any herbs or over the counter laxatives?

Do you get the headache and sick to your stomach feeling at the same time? Is the headache on the top, back or side of your head?

Do you crave sugary snacks, cold food or drinks or like to crunch on food?

Write back. I have helped a lot of women with gynecological issues in my practice.

Sincerely,

Sue

Customer: replied 11 years ago.
Reply to Sue's Post: Thank you for answering my question.
My last pregnacy was a little over 3 years ago. My period started back when my son was 11 months old. About 5 months after I stopped nursing my son my periods were farther apart than normal (Aug 2003) and were lighter than before my pregnacies. My doctor put me on birth control pills for 6 months (starting nov 2003) and things were normal. About 3 months after stopping the birth control pills my periods started to be irregular again. I had an annual exam in Nov 2004 which was normal. My husband had a vasectomty a couple of years ago and we are monogamous so I don't think I am pregnant. I have a history of ovarian cysts, the only discharge I have occurs when I think I am ovulating and there is no odor associated with it. When I was 20 I had HPV but there were no warts present and had cryo surgery was done. I have had normal pap smears since. I don't take any laxatives or herbs. I have migrane headaches that are managed with ibuprophen. The headaches are associated with atmospheric pressure changes, lack of caffine and pollen allergies. I don't have any specific food cravings.
Expert:  Sue replied 11 years ago.
DearCustomer

Did your periods start being irregular four months ago (Nov or Dec 2004) or 3 months after stopping the birth control pills (aprox. July 2004)? Did your periods change after your last exam in Nov. or before?

If it started getting irregular and heavy a few months after the pill, then there should be a connection. There is some new evidence that a woman's flow becomes heavier after each pregnancy (up to 3 pregnancies) and then it stays at that new heavier level. If you had your babies close together, then it would be hard to see a pattern of increasing flow with each pregnancies. This wouldn't explain the irregular periods, but getting on and off the pill would.

If you have gained weight and are overweight, your periods will probably be heavier.   

Another thing you want to look at is the level of physical activity that you endure while you are menstruating. According to Traditional Chinese Medicine principles, you should stay off your feet as much as possible, rest and eat plenty of nourishing, protein rich food, if you are experiencing heavy flow. Watch out for anemia, especially if you are on a vegetarian diet.

The ovarian cysts could be back and that would explain the irregularity as well as the heavy periods. Many woman experience nausea or vomiting or gas with the cysts.

Write back.

-Sue





     






Customer: replied 11 years ago.
Reply to Sue's Post: Five months after I stopped nursing my periods became irregular. They were varing days apart each month and always more than 30 days apart but no more than 40 days apart. The flow was not any heavier than I normally experienced just the time between them. My doctor felt it was do to the prenancies and this may be my new normal cycle. She put me on the pill at that time for 6 months at which time they were normal again (every 28 days). Three months after going off the pill my period started to become irregular again. The time between them was again more than 30 days apart but no more than 40 days apart, again the flow was not any heavier than it was before I had children. I talked with my doctor again (nov 2004) and she felt like it wasn't anything to be concerned about. However in Dec 2004 my periods began to be closier together not a heavier flow. The flow is only heavy for about 2 days in which I am changing a tampon or a pad about 5 to six times a day, but that is only for 2 days out of the period. Most of the time the flow is very low and I am able to use panty liniers. I do not have the cramping I have experienced in the past with the ovarian cysts or the other symptoms you described. The nausea I described is very minor compared to the cramps I had in the past. The last time I was on the pill for birth control was in 1999. Since that time I have only been on the pill for the six months (nov 2003 - April 2004)trial period to see if that would regulate my cylcle. The rest of the time I was either pregnant or my husband and I relied on his vasectomy to prevent any further pregnancies.
Expert:  Sue replied 11 years ago.
DearCustomer

It sounds like dysfunctional uterine bleeding, which is caused by a hormonal imbalance. It is also possible that you are experiencing anovulation (not ovulating), also hormonal. You mentioned that you have a history of ovarian cysts, but didn't mention if it is Polycystic Ovarian Disease or not.

Your body is trying to find hormonal balance after the pregnancy and birth control pills. Additionally, you may also be starting perimenopause. (Some experts believe that perimenopause can start up to 15 years before menopause).

You can get checked out again. If you do go in have your dr. also test you for anemia and do a thyroid panel and an ultrasound on your ovaries. (Always ask for a copy of your test results that you save for your own records.)

If you don't go in, then your periods may straighten out on their own.

One suggestion is, if you have access to organic calf or beef liver, you should eat some after every period.

I hope I helped.

Sincerely,

Sue
    
Sue, Acupuncturist and Herbalist
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 10
Experience: Licensed in two States
Sue and 2 other Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 11 years ago.
Reply to Sue's Post: Thank you for your time.

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