A menstrual disorder is an abnormal condition in a woman’s menstrual cycle. Menstrual disorders are a major factor contributing to infertility, irregular periods, and premenstrual disorders. Menstrual disorders may be caused from a combination of multiple problems including:
- Hormone imbalances
- Many other Causes
Common disorders and definitions
Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) refers to physical and emotional symptoms that occur in the one to two weeks before a woman’s period. Symptoms often vary between women and resolve around the start of bleeding. Common symptoms include acne, tender breasts, bloating, feeling tired, irritability, and mood changes. Often symptoms are present for around six days.
Treatment involves regulating high-salt diet, alcohol, or caffeine. The underlying mechanism is believed to involve changes in hormone levels. Reducing salt, caffeine, and stress along with increasing exercise is typically all that is recommended in those with mild symptoms
Disorders of cycle length
Polymenorrhea is the medical term for cycles with intervals of 21 days or fewer.
Irregular menstruation is where there is variation in menstrual cycle length of more than approximately eight days for a woman. The term metrorrhagia is often used for irregular menstruation that occurs between the expected menstrual periods.
Oligomenorrhea is the medical term for infrequent, often light menstrual periods (intervals exceeding 35 days).
Amenorrhea is the absence of a menstrual period in a woman of reproductive age. Physiologic states of amenorrhoea are seen during pregnancy and lactation (breastfeeding). Outside of the reproductive years there is absence of menses during childhood and after menopause.
Disorders of ovulation include infertility:
Infertility is the inability of a person, animal or plant to reproduce by natural means. Women who are fertile experience a natural period of fertility before and during ovulation, and they are naturally infertile during the rest of the menstrual cycle.
Oligoovulation is infrequent or irregular ovulation (usually defined as cycles of ≥36 days or <8 cycles a year)
Anovulation is absence of ovulation when it would be normally expected (in a post-menarchal, premenopausal woman). Anovulation usually manifests itself as irregularity of menstrual periods, that is, unpredictable variability of intervals, duration, or bleeding. Anovulation can also cause cessation of periods (secondary amenorrhea) or excessive bleeding (dysfunctional uterine bleeding).
Disorders of flow
Hypomenorrhea is abnormally light menstrual periods.
Menorrhagia is an abnormally heavy and prolonged menstrual period. If there is excessive menstrual and uterine bleeding other than that caused by menstruation, menometrorrhagia may be diagnosed. Causes may be due to abnormal blood clotting, disruption of normal hormonal regulation of periods or disorders of the endometrial lining of the uterus. Depending upon the cause, it may be associated with abnormally painful periods.
Main article: Dysmenorrhea
Dysmenorrhea (or dysmenorrhoea), cramps or painful menstruation, involves menstrual periods that are accompanied by either sharp, intermittent pain or dull, aching pain, usually in the pelvis or lower abdomen.
At Fontana Chiropractic and Acupuncture, we focus on all aspect’s of a woman’s health when it comes to menstrual disorders. We look at any life style and physical factors that could be contributing to these issues and give counseling and herbal medicine to help some of these factors. Let us help with your menstrual needs.
Herbal medicine has been clinically shown to improve fertility from patients with no ovulation disorders through this Meta-Analysis.
Title: Chinese Herbal Medicine for Infertility with Anovulation: A Systematic Review.
Abstract: Meta-analysis of 692 retrieved articles. 14 meeting the selection criteria.
Results: Meta-analysis indicated that Chinese herbal medicine significantly increased the pregnancy rate and reduced the miscarriage rate compared to clomiphene. Herbal medicine is effective in treating infertility with anovulation. In addition, herbal medicine also increased the ovulation rate and improved the cervical mucus score compared to clomiphene. Also, no significant adverse effects were identified for the use of Chinese Herbal Medicine from the studies included in this review.
Citation: Tan L, Tong Y, Zhang T, et al. Chinese Herbal Medicine for Infertility with Anovulation: A Systematic Review. Journal Of Alternative & Complementary Medicine [serial online]. December 2012;18(12):1087-1100. Available from: Academic Search Premier, Ipswich, MA. Accessed July 25, 2014.
Acupuncture has been clinically shown through these randomized controlled trials to reduce hot flashes in menopause. Sleep disorders, tightness in the chest, irritability, bone pain, feeling depressed was also significantly improved.
Title: Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine for Hot Flushes in Menopause: A Randomized Trial.
Design: One hundred women in spontaneous menopause with at least three episodes of hot flushes daily were randomly allocated to two treatment groups (50 per group): Women in group A were given diet, self-massage training, and treatment with acupuncture, and women in group B (the control group) were given the same diet and self-massage training.
Measurment: Mean change in frequency and/or intensity in menopause-related symptoms were estimated by questionnaire after treatment at week 4.
Results: Treatment with acupuncture significantly reduced the occurrence of hot flushes and sudden sweating. Other symptoms (sleep disorders, tightness in the chest, irritability, bone pain, feeling depressed) significantly improved. Acupuncture in an integrated system that includes therapeutic techniques such as diet therapy and Tui-na self-massage can be used to treat hot flushes and selected symptoms in postmenopausal women.
Citation: Baccetti S, Da Frè M, Parazzini F, et al. Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine for Hot Flushes in Menopause: A Randomized Trial. Journal Of Alternative & Complementary Medicine [serial online]. July 2014;20(7):550-557. Available from: Academic Search Premier, Ipswich, MA. Accessed July 25, 2014.
Acupuncture has been shown with both meta anlaysis and systematic reviews of controlled trials to increases fertility in women undergoing in-vitro fertilization.
Title: Effects of acupuncture on rates of pregnancy and live birth among women undergoing in vitro fertilization: systematic review and meta-analysis.
Abstract: Meta-analysis of 7 trials with 1366 women undergoing vitro fertilization.
Results: “Acupuncture was associated with significant and clinically relevant improvements in clinical pregnancy, ongoing pregnancy, and live birth.”
Citation: Manheimer E, Zhang G, Bouter L, et al. Effects of acupuncture on rates of pregnancy and live birth among women undergoing in vitro fertilisation: systematic review and meta-analysis. BMJ (Clinical Research Ed.) [serial online]. March 8, 2008;336(7643):545-549. Available from: MEDLINE with Full Text, Ipswich, MA. Accessed July 25, 2014.