Amongst the many types of menstrual disorders that occur, heavy menstrual bleeding is a common complaint. It is known as menorrhagia. The average menstrual cycle is of 28 days with menstruation may lasting for 2 to 7 days, during which time the average blood loss is estimated to be 25 to 80 millilters (about 0.8 to 2.7 fluid ounces).
What is Menorrhagia?
Prolonged or heavy menstrual bleeding lasting for more than 8 to 10 days and blood loss over 80 mL is known as menorrhagia or hypermenorrhea. In menorrhagia, the menstrual cycle is regular but the duration and flow is increased. Excessive bleeding may result in clots coming out with the menstrual blood. Read more on menstrual blood clots.
Menorrhagia should be differentiated from other similar conditions such as :
- Metrorrhagia or intermenstrual bleeding is bleeding occurring any time in between periods or abnormal vaginal bleeding.
- Menometrorrhagia or irregular periods is bleeding occurring at irregular intervals, with variations in the amount and duration. Conditions causing intermenstrual bleeding may ultimately lead to menometrorrhagia.
- Polymenorrhea is too frequent menstruation, occurring within less than 21 days.