Is irregular menstruation common after appendectomy?

Posted on Thu, 11 Jun 2015 in Liver and Gall Bladder
Question: Is irregular menstruation common after appendectomy? I am 3 days late and having strong stomach aches, mild nausea, stomach hardness in places and bloating. I am 34 and have never had a late period before. Appendectomy was 3 weeks ago.
Answered by Dr. Vasudha Jayant Athavale 3 hours later
Brief Answer:
You need assessment of operation results/ eclusion pregnancy/home care .

Detailed Answer:

It's hardly 3 weeks after your operation appendectomy and before you are completely out of operation stress- you find the delay in period along with lot of pain in abdomen. Naturally you are concerned, I understand it.

Yes, menstrual irregularity is frequently seen after appendectomy.
Menstrual cycles are governed by cyclical hormonal changes in a woman's body. So anything that disturbs the hormones can cause menstrual irregularities. Apart from thyroid/ ovarian problems having direct impact on menstrual hormones, many general causes like- weakness & anemia, debilitating illness, any type of physical & psychological stress tend to disturb hormonal pattern . Emotions also have effect on hormones & so the menses.
Out of these I feel your physical/ psychological stress due to appendectomy, & also the weakness arising out of it, is the cause of your delay in menses.It's mostly a temporary problem for women having regular cycles before operation/ women who are not pregnant.

The pain you have seems to be a part of hormonal disturbance due to operation & premenstrual pain exaggerated following local handling/ inflammation/healing with fibrosis around the scar of operation. It's specially so because appendix lies in near vicinity of uterus (on right side of uterus & right fallopian tube). Therefore if the pain is severe and affecting routine, it demands consultation of the operating surgeon/ gynecologist for exclusion of any complication of operation ( infection/ inflammation/ abscess). But till you get appointment of the doctors, you should go for-
* Home management-- Do not panic- unless the pain/vomiting is unbearable, there is fever.( in such case you have to visit ER)
- Get pregnancy test done to exclude pregnancy if you have been active sexually post surgery
- take rest/ avoid exertion/ weight lifting.
-Do not massage/foment the abdomen,
- painkillers over the counter with anti inflammatory effect can be taken after eating.
- Take plenty of liquids/ water & easily digested ,nourishing food. Avoid spicy & heavy food.

Once the operation complications are excluded along with exclusion of pregnancy.. please remain tension free & wait for the periods to come.

I hope the answer has furnished sufficient information to you & helps you too. Any follow up query is welcome.


PS: Gynecologist consultation may be needed if the cycle remains disturbed & painful after a couple of months.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Prasad
Answered by
Dr. Vasudha Jayant Athavale

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :1970

Answered : 6864 Questions


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