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What causes irregular menstrual periods and brown spotting?

DOCTOR OF THE MONTH - Mar 2014
Mar 2014
User rating for this question
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Practicing since : 2001
Answered : 1390 Questions
Question
Okay, so I'm 17 years old and I haven't had my period in a about 3 months. Prior to those three months. I missed my period in March and had it in April. After that I no longer had it. Now it's August and I'm having dark brown discharge with a little blood every once in a while. I reallybdont know what this is. HELP
Posted Fri, 29 Aug 2014 in Women's Health
 
 
Answered by Dr. Madhuri N Bagde 10 minutes later
Brief Answer:
do not worry, mostly hormone problems

Detailed Answer:
Hello and welcome to HCM,

I am Dr Madhuri a Consultant Obstetrician and Gynecologist and will be helping you with your queries.
Such menstrual irregularities are not uncommon at your age. The common cause of this is hormonal imbalances and most common imbalance is a condition called polycystic ovaries where cysts form inside the ovaries and do not allow the release of female eggs leading to irregular periods. Others are thyroid and prolactin hormone problems.

Another reason for missed periods and spotting may be ovarian cysts that are small non cancerous ovarian tumors common in young age. They can be diagnosed by ultrasound scan.

The reason for missed periods and such discharge in sexually active women may be pregnancy and abortion.

So as of now, please do not worry. The conditions are extremely common, especially hormone dysfunction is now rampant because of modern lifestyle. I recommend that you see a gynecologist and get an evaluation as well as get an ultrasound and a hormonal blood testing done to look for the cause. The treatment will then depend upon the cause.

Hope this satisfies your query.
Thanks for using HCM.     
Feel free to ask any more questions that you may have.
Dr Madhuri Bagde
Consultant Obstetrician and Gynecologist
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
Follow-up: What causes irregular menstrual periods and brown spotting? 15 minutes later
could being overweight have a play in this, because I'm a virgin so it can't be pregnancy.
 
 
Answered by Dr. Madhuri N Bagde 20 minutes later
Brief Answer:
weight has a role

Detailed Answer:
Yes excessive weight is definitely linked to irregular periods. Excess body fat especially belly fat leads to high estrogen and insulin levels and so causes hormonal imbalance. This leads to trapping of the female eggs in the ovaries and formation of cysts. This is called PCOD or polycystic ovarian disease. The cysts further lead to hormonal issues and the condition continues to multiply.

Weight loss, proper diet [no fat, no sugar, strict meal times and using lots of fruits and vegetables as well as a calorie deficit of 500 calories a day] combined with exercise; meditation and good sleep help control this condition. Some women may need drugs like metformin and low dose birth control pills to help protect the ovary.

Thyroid hormone deficiency [hypothyroidism] also causes this kind of picture with weight gain, lethargy and irregular cycles. It can be detected by blood test.

So please get and examination ultrasound and blood test to establish a diagnosis and then treatment can be directed towards the cause.

Do not worry, these are common issues and are due to our modern lifestyle with stress and problems with diet.

Hope this helps. Feel free for any more queries.

Dr Madhuri
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
Follow-up: What causes irregular menstrual periods and brown spotting? 22 hours later
Although you said its normal for this to be happening. Is it normal that when I'm working out or when in get hot that the blood is a normal red color?
 
 
Answered by Dr. Madhuri N Bagde 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
These are common problems not normal problems

Detailed Answer:
Hello and welcome back,

I had earlier mentioned that this is not uncommon or these are common issues. I did not mean to say that they are normal. There is an abnormality which is most likely to be hormonal and it needs an evaluation. So an ultrasound and hormone tests have already been advised by me along with weight loss.
You do need treatment for this if the problem perisists and so it is better to get an examination and tests done to help resolve the issue.

I hope this clarifies things.

I am always here to help you.

Take care.
Dr Madhuri
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
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