ZocdocAnswersCan endometriosis cause heavy periods?

Question

Can endometriosis cause heavy periods?

I've been having very heavy periods. Could it be endometriosis? I am a 28 year old female.

Answer

Endometriosis can be a cause of heavy periods, but it is not the only possibility. Endometriosis is when the inner lining of the uterus grows in locations outside the uterus (typically in the fallopian tubes). Endometriosis typically causes very painful cramping about the time of your period. In addition, it make it difficult to get pregnant. Heavy periods can also be due to very common benign tumors of the uterus called uterine fibroids. These tumors do not become cancer, but they can cause heavy bleeding. Another possibility is adenomyosis. This is when the inner lining of you uterus grows abnormally into the muscular layer. Finally, problems with blood clotting can result in heavy periods. I suggest that you schedule an appointment with your OBGYN. He or she can listen to your symptoms and perform a thorough pelvic exam. Your doctor will also likely want to get iron studies with a complete blood count to look at your hematocrit to make sure you are not becoming iron deficient. You will also need coagulation studies to look for problems with blood clotting. Finally, you may need a pelvic ultrasound to look for evidence of fibroids or adenomyosis. If both of these are negative then endometriosis can be considered. I hope you get to the bottom of it.

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