Painful Periods and Pelvic Pain

Gynaecology

Dysmenorrhoea or severe period pain is a common condition affecting up to 50% of women during their lifetime. The pain is usually cyclical and described as crampy, lower abdominal and may radiate to back or thighs. It may be associated with bloating, nausea, vomiting, fatigue, change in bowel habits, pain with defecation, urinary frequency and pain with sexual intercourse.

There are many causes of period pain including local prostaglandins, endometriosis, pelvic inflammatory disease, adenomyosis, cervical stenosis, ovarian cysts, ectopic pregnancy and rarely congenital abnormalities.

A thorough history and examination will assist with diagnosing the cause of pain. A pelvic ultrasound will check for conditions including ovarian cysts, ectopic pregnancy or an incorrectly placed IUD.

A hysteroscopy can assess the uterine cavity whilst a laparoscopy allows us to assess the pelvic eg for endometriosis or adhesions and operate if necessary.

Numerous medical and surgical options are available to alleviate pelvic pain.


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