What is abnormal vaginal bleeding?

Abnormal Vaginal Bleeding
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Abnormal vaginal bleeding: Overview

Abnormal vaginal bleeding is unexpected bleeding from the vagina. The source of the bleeding may be from the vagina or uterus. If it comes from the uterus, it's called abnormal uterine bleeding. Abnormal bleeding from the vagina can be caused by things like a disease, an injury to the vagina, or a problem with the cervix. These may be from sex, an object in the vagina, an infection, or polyps on the cervix.

When you have unexpected bleeding, it's important to let your doctor know. Your doctor can do an exam and tests to see if the bleeding is coming from your vagina or uterus. They can also check for problems. Treatment depends on the cause of the bleeding.

Bleeding during pregnancy is a different problem. If you are pregnant and have any amount of bleeding from the vagina, be sure to tell your doctor.

Abnormal vaginal bleeding

Abnormal vaginal bleeding is unexpected bleeding from the inside of the vagina. What is considered abnormal varies, depending on what is normal for a particular woman.

Examples of abnormal vaginal bleeding include bleeding:

  • When a woman isn't expecting her menstrual period.
  • After sex.
  • When a woman's menstrual flow is lighter or heavier than is normal for her.
  • At an unexpected time of life, such as before age 10 or after menopause.

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