Abnormal Bleeding Specialist

Advanced Care for Women

Gynecology & Urogynecology located in Sanford, NC

Every woman’s menstrual cycle is different, but bleeding that’s abnormally heavy or prolonged can signal a problem. Board-certified OB/GYN Paul Heimbecker, MD, FACOG, at Advanced Care for Women diagnoses and treats abnormal uterine bleeding for women in Sanford, North Carolina. If you have symptoms of abnormal uterine bleeding, don’t hesitate to call or book an appointment online.

Abnormal Bleeding Q & A

What is considered abnormal uterine bleeding?

A normal menstrual cycle ranges from 24-38 days, with periods lasting up to eight days. Bleeding in one or more of the following situations is considered abnormal:

  • Bleeding in between periods
  • Bleeding after sex
  • Bleeding after menopause
  • Heavy bleeding during periods

If the length of your menstrual cycle varies by more than 7-9 days, that’s considered an irregular period. Irregular periods are common among young women who are just beginning their menstrual cycles and women in their 40s who are starting the transition to menopause.

What causes abnormal uterine bleeding?

Hormone imbalance, such as in the years leading up to menopause, is a common cause of abnormal uterine bleeding. Other conditions that may cause abnormal bleeding include:

  • Growths in the uterus such as fibroids or polyps
  • Uterine cancer or cervical cancer
  • Bleeding disorders or platelet dysfunction
  • Ectopic pregnancy or miscarriage

Polycystic ovary syndrome is a common women’s health condition that often causes irregular periods.

How do you diagnose and treat abnormal uterine bleeding?

Dr. Heimbecker begins with a physical exam and a review of your medical history. It’s helpful to provide information about the dates, length, and flow type of your periods for him to reference. You can log your periods on a calendar or use an app on your phone designed for this purpose.

In addition to an exam, Dr. Heimbecker may use certain tests to determine the cause of your abnormal bleeding, such as:

  • Testing to rule out pregnancy
  • Blood test to check hormone levels
  • Ultrasound imaging test

He may also perform a hysteroscopy test, which involves inserting a thin, lighted instrument called a hysteroscope into your vagina and through the opening of your cervix. This allows Dr. Heimbecker to see the inside of your uterus.

Then, he recommends the best treatment for your particular condition. Depending on the cause and severity of your bleeding, Dr. Heimbecker may recommend medication management to control your symptoms, such as hormonal birth control or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).

If your condition is severe or doesn’t improve with conservative treatment, Dr. Heimbecker may recommend surgery.

If you suspect you have abnormal uterine bleeding, call Advanced Care for Women or book an appointment online today.