ZocdocAnswersWhy have my menstrual cramps become more severe as I've gotten older?

Question

Why have my menstrual cramps become more severe as I've gotten older?

I am a 32 year old woman, no children. I have experienced extreme discomfort during menstruation during the past two years. I have always had cramping, but never this severe when I was younger. Is it normal for cramping to become worse as I get older?

Answer

Any time you experience a change like this in your cycles, you should seek help from a physician. This is because you want to make sure that any issues with your reproductive organs are taken care of. It is not normal for your cramping to get worse as you get older. Increased pain with menstruation can be caused by problems with your uterus. The first possibility that comes to mind is endometriosis. This is caused by uterine tissue that grows abnormally can causes pain during your period. Another cause of abnormal cramping is uterine fibroids. These are benign uterine tumors which cause increased bleeding and cramping during periods. I suggest that you schedule an appointment with your OBGYN. Bring with you a calendar of your menstrual cycles and details about pain, cramping, and amount of bleeding you experience during your periods. Your doctor can perform a thorough pelvic exam and perhaps do an ultrasound of your belly to see if there are any abnormalities. You will likely get some prescriptions for medications to take for the cramping (birth control pills if you need or want them and anti-inflammatory drugs). In addition, the tow of you can come up with a follow up plan to figure out what is causing your cramping, if it can't be figured out initially. Good luck.

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