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Tag: anemia

Heavy Menstrual Flow: “My Period is Heavy…But What’s ‘Too Heavy’?”

Heavy menstrual periods (medically termed ‘menorrhagia’) is a common GYN concern, and a frequent reason for women visiting their doctors.  10-35% of women report heavy menstrual periods in population-based studies.  Though patients may not know the clinical definition of menorrhagia, I believe them when they report ‘heavy periods’… (based on relative changes in their flow compared to when their period was more ‘normal’…or based on their perception of the flow being ‘heavier than normal’.)

Menorrhagia is clinically defined as menstrual flow lasting longer than 7 days…or greater than 80ml (5-6 tablespoons) blood flow…but who really knows how to measure blood flow that way? Admittedly, for both patients and physicians, blood loss is difficult to quantitate by these measures.  More relevant descriptions of heavy menstrual flow may include
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