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Symptoms of Menstrual Disorders

Most women have menstrual problems at some point in their lives. But you should call your doctor if you have:

Menorrhagia (Heavy Bleeding)

Signs are:

  • Your pads and tampons are soaked with blood (and need to be changed) more often than once every one to two hours.
  • You are passing blood clots that are one inch or bigger.
  • Your periods last longer than seven days.

Amenorrhea (Lack of Menstruation)

Primary Amenorrhea

You may have this if:

  • You are 16 years old or older and have never had a period.
  • You are 14 years old or older, have not had normal sexual growth, and have never had a period.
  • You have not had a period, and it has been at least two years since you went through puberty (normal sexual growth).

Secondary Amenorrhea

During the early teen years, it is common for periods to be irregular for the first 18 months after the first period. It is also common for periods to be irregular as you near menopause (often between the ages of 40-58). Periods also stop during pregnancy.

If you are not pregnant or entering menopause, you may have secondary amenorrhea. This may be the case if you had normal periods, but they have stopped for at least three months in a row.


Abnormal uterine bleeding. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at:http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T361089/Abnormal-uterine-bleeding. Updated August 24, 2018. Accessed October 29, 2018.

Amenorrhea. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at:http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T116009/Amenorrhea. Updated January 16, 2018. Accessed October 29, 2018.

Klein DA, Poth MA. Amenorrhea: an approach to diagnosis and management. Am Fam Physician. 2013 Jun 1;87(11):781-788.

Menstruation and the menstrual cycle fact sheet. Office on Women's Health website. Available at: http://www.womenshealth.gov/publications/our-publications/fact-sheet/menstruation.html. Updated April 25, 2018. Accessed October 29, 2018.

Last reviewed September 2018 by EBSCO Medical Review BoardBeverly Siegal, MD, FACOG  Last Updated: 10/29/2018