|Symptoms & Signs Index|
painful menstruation usually in the pelvis or lower abdomen.
Medical terms related to
menstrual cramps :
Cramps, Menstrual, Dysmenorrhea, Spasmodic Dysmenorrhea
causes of menstrual cramps:
o Stress and anxiety
o Pelvic inflammatory disease
o Multiple sexual partners
o History of sexual or physical abuse
o Ovarian cysts
o Intrauterine Device (IUD),usually the first three months after insertion
o Uterine Fibroids (Benign Tumors of the Uterus)
o Premenstrual Syndrome:
A variety of symptoms manifested by some women prior to menstruation that may include emotional instability, irritability, insomnia, fatigue, anxiety, depression, headache, edema, and abdominal pain; called also PMS.
The presence and growth of functioning endometrial tissue in places other than the uterus that often results in severe pain and infertility.
Other Causes of
or go to the hospital if menstrual cramps
is accompanied by:
o Passing blood clots
o Sever pain, your period is over one week late, and you have been sexually active( Risk of ectopic pregnancy)
doctor if menstrual cramps is
o Foul-smelling vaginal discharge
o IUD that has been placed more than 3 months
o Cramps stay more than 3 months in spite of self-care measures
that may be performed include:
o Blood tests including (CBC)
o Dilation of the cervix
o Cultures (to rule out sexually transmitted diseases such as gonorrhea)
Follow these steps to avoid prescription medications:
o Take warm showers or baths.
o Apply a heating pad to your lower abdomen.
o Drink warm beverages.
o Circularly massage around your lower abdomen with your fingertips .
o Walk or exercise regularly.
o Follow a diet rich in complex carbohydrates, like whole grains, fruits.
o Have a diet low in salt, sugar, alcohol, and caffeine.
o Have frequent but light meals.
o Try over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medicine, such as ibuprofen.
o Practice relaxation techniques like meditation or yoga.
o Try vitamin B6, calcium, and magnesium supplements
o Keep your legs elevated while lying down. Or lie on your side with knees bent.
If self-care measures do not work, your health provider may prescribe you these medications:
o Cox-2 inhibitors such as celecoxib (Celebrex) and valdecoxib (Bextra)
o Stronger anti-inflammatories like diclofenac (Cataflam)
o Birth control pills (OCP)
o Stronger pain relievers (even narcotics like codeine, for brief periods)
for menstrual cramps may
o Acetaminophen (Tylenol)
o Celecoxib (Celebrex)
o Naproxen, Naprosyn, Naprelan, Anaprox, Aleve
o Oral Contraceptives (Birth Control Pills)
o Rofecoxib (Vioxx)
o Estrogens (Conjugated)
o Ibuprofen, Advil, Motrin, Medipren, Nuprin
o Ketoprofen, Orudis, Oruvail
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