UAB Medical West OBGYNs explain how to know when uterine bleeding is abnormal

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BESSEMER, Ala. (CBS 42 Community) – Abnormal uterine bleeding can affect women of all ages and can run the gamut in terms of severity. Dr. Richard Steven and Dr. Jessica Gill at Medical West Hospital recommend that if something seems off on a monthly basis, do not hesitate to make an appointment with your OBGYN. 

“Women know their bodies. These are things that happen every month and have been for years. If things are not right, they pick up on the little things. And it can be life-changing. (Abnormal uterine bleeding) interferes with their daily lives,” said Dr. Steven. 

“I see patients as young as 13 or 14 years old complaining about heavy bleeding. This is bleeding longer than seven days, and heavy clots. It can affect women in their reproductive age, and it can also affect women after menopause. That is what we call postmenopausal bleeding,” Dr. Gill said. 

A minor one-time variation does not mean that much. But if this is a reoccurring problem, that can mean a lot. If you are experiencing abnormal uterine bleeding, the first thing your doctor will do is try to find out the cause.

A routine pap smear can check for the presence of abnormal cells. A pelvic ultrasound can find other abnormalities like fibroids and polyps.

“Fibroids range in multiple different sizes. Some people can have multiple fibroids, or you can have one enlarged fibroid. I’ve seen fibroids as big as 12 centimeters before,” said Dr. Gill. 

For women that want to have children, birth control pills, hormonal IUD’s, and progesterone are common treatment options. For women who no longer want to have children, a hysterectomy is a permanent treatment option. 

Dr. Stephen recommends that parents make sure their young daughters feel comfortable talking with their doctor if anything seems off. 

“If (abnormal uterine bleeding is) causing a lot of distress and embarrassment, if they’re having problems in school and things because of it, whether it’s normal or not, it’s time for us to take a look and see what we can do to help,” Dr. Steven said. 

If you are living with irregular uterine bleeding, talk with your doctor or consider making an appointment with an OBGYN at Medical West. For more information, visit MedicalWestHospital.org.

This story was sponsored by UAB Medical West

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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