Learn about the causes of Dysmenorrhea & find a practitioner in Auckland, Hamilton, Bay of
Plenty, Wellington, Christchurch, Dunedin to help you overcome Dysmenorrhea within New
Therapies which may benefit Dysmenorrhea
is pain and discomfort experienced just before or during a
menstrual period. The pain and cramps experienced are more severe than
normal period pain, and can be accompanied by heavy blood loss.
Causes of dysmenorrhea
Dysmenorrhea is the medical term given to menstrual cramps experienced
in the lower abdomen during or before menstruation. For many, the
discomfort is mild but some women have severe cramps which interfere
with their day-to-day life.
During female menstruation, hormones
trigger the uterus to contract to help with expelling the uterus
lining. The hormones involved with this process (called prostaglandis)
are also responsible for pain and inflammation - the higher the level
of prostaglandis, the more severe the dysmenorrhea.
muscle contractions constrict blood vessels which usually help to feed
the uterus. The resulting pain is comparable with an angina attack
whereby the coronary arteries become blocked starving the heart of
Dysmenorrhea can also be caused by:
- Endometriosis – a condition whereby the lining of the uterus attaches to the fallopian tubes, ovaries or pelvis tissue lining.
- Fibroids – uterine fibroids are non-cancerous tumours in the uterus wall.
- Adenomyosis – a condition whereby the uterus lining grows outside of the uterus wall
- Pelvic inflammatory disease
– this is an infection of the reproductive organs and is typically
caused by bacteria from sexually transmitted infections (STIs).
- Cervical stenosis
– the cervix opening can sometimes be too small which restricts blood
flow during menstruation and causes painful pressure in the uterus.
Symptoms of dysmenorrhea
Dysmenorrhea can cause symptoms such as:
- dull throbbing pain in the lower abdomen
- cramps in the lower abdomen
- pain around the lower abdomen
- pain in the lower back and thighs
- loose stools
Diagnosis of dysmenorrhea
For the majority of women, dysmenorrhea is uncomfortable but tolerable
while experiencing the menstrual cycle. If your symptoms are severe, or
you suspect an underlying disorder, then visit your GP for a proper
To help the GP determine the cause of the problem,
they may refer you for a number of diagnostic tests including:
ultrasound, CT scan, MRI scan, hysteroscopy and laparoscopy.
– this test uses sound waves to check for problems or abnormalities in
the uterus, cervix and fallopian tubes. Most tests are performed
against the abdomen but some cases may require a wand to be inserted
into the vagina to check the ovaries and uterus lining.
- Computerised tomography (CT) – this is a series of cross-sectional images created by X-rays to build an image of the bones and internal organs of the body.
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
– a powerful magnetic field and radio waves produce images of the
body's internal structure. The scan is painless and can help check for
endometriosis or tumours.
– a thin tube is inserted into the vagina and through to the uterus.
The telescopic tube allows the doctor to check for fibroids or polyps.
– this is a surgical procedure whereby small incisions are made in the
abdomen to allow a fibre-optic tube with a camera on the end to check
for conditions such as: endometriosis, ovarian cysts, fibroids,
adhesions or ectopic pregnancies.
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