What is amenorrhea?
It is the absence of menstruation or period . It can be due to physical or psychological factors. It can be primary school or high school.
Do I have primary amenorrhea?
It occurs when the first menstruation does not occur during puberty . It is considered normal for it to appear between the ages of 10 and 16.
Primary amenorrhea may be due to:
- Lack of hormones such as progesterone, estrogens or androgens.
- Cysts in the ovaries.
- Congenital disease that causes abnormal development of the uterus and vagina.
- Or by the presence of an unperforated and very closed hymen, which makes it difficult to eliminate menstrual flow.
Do I have secondary amenorrhea?
It occurs when normal and regular menses have already been had and they disappear for more than three cycles.
It can be due to many causes:
- During the first two or three years after the first menstruation, girls can have irregular cycles and even periods of amenorrhea. This is normal. In these cases, menstruation reappears spontaneously.
- For a pregnancy , if you have sexual intercourse. The best way to find out is to do a urine pregnancy test.
- Gynecological disorders: such as polycystic ovaries .
- Excessive or very intense exercise. It happens to many high-level young athletes.
- Thyroid disorders: both hypothyroidism in which the thyroid gland produces insufficient amounts of thyroid hormone and hyperthyroidism in which the gland secretes too much hormone.
- major obesity .
- Or drastic weight loss.
- Eating disorders: anorexia and bulimia .
- Psychological alterations such as stress or anxiety . Remember that sometimes the anxiety itself about a possible pregnancy can cause a menstrual delay.
Is it normal to have irregular cycles?
They often occur in early adolescence. As time passes (about 3 years from the start) the cycles become more regular, with a recognizable and predictable pattern.
Some girls have regular cycles, but it can be brought forward or delayed during periods of stress.
If your periods are irregular, always carry pads or tampons with you.
What should I do?
One of the most frequent doubts of adolescents with amenorrhea is whether they should see a doctor . Our recommendation is that you consult whenever the subject worries you.
If you have sex and skip a period, it could indicate that you are pregnant. The fastest and most effective test is the urine test. You can also buy it at the pharmacy.
You should also check if your periods are irregular for 3 years or if you suspect a problem.
What tests will the doctor order?
Depending on the symptoms, the doctor may request:
- Pelvic ultrasound to determine any abnormalities of the reproductive system.
- Blood tests and hormonal study.
- Others (MRI, CT, biopsy…).
How is amenorrhea treated?
It will depend on your cause. May include:
- Progesterone supplements (hormonal treatment).
- Oral contraceptives .
- Medicines or surgery to treat the cause.
- Diet changes when there are weight problems (higher amount of calories and fat).
- Calcium supplements to reduce bone loss.
Leading a healthy life, with a healthy and balanced diet, an adequate rest regimen and frequent physical activity help reduce stress levels and prevent secondary amenorrhea.