Joan K. Berman, M.D.
Gynecologist located in Upper East Side, New York City, NY
It’s common for menstrual cycles to vary from woman to woman, but irregular or abnormal periods can be a sign of an underlying medical condition. New York City gynecologist Joan Berman, MD, diagnoses and treats abnormal periods in women of all ages, from adolescence through menopause, at her practice in the Upper East Side. If you’re concerned your menstrual cycle may be abnormal, call the office or book an appointment online today.
Abnormal Periods (Menstrual Cycles) Q & A
What are irregular periods?
Every woman’s menstrual cycle is different. Yours may come on time every month, or perhaps it’s unpredictable. You may skip some months or have cycles that vary in length. Average menstrual cycles range from 21-35 days, and average periods last four to seven days.
Irregular periods may include:
- Periods that occur less than 21 or more than 35 days apart
- Menstrual flow that’s heavier or lighter than normal
- Periods that last longer than seven days
- Missing three or more periods in a row
- Bleeding or spotting in between periods
Who gets irregular periods?
Any woman who gets periods may experience irregularity. However, abnormal periods are most common among young women who just began menstruating in the past year and a half. They’re also common in women approaching menopause.
Dr. Berman has extensive experience and specialized training in treating both adolescent and menopausal patients.
What causes irregular periods?
There are many potential causes of irregular periods, ranging from lifestyle factors to medical conditions. Lifestyle causes of abnormal periods include:
- Changes in exercise routines
- Changes to daily routines
- Gaining or losing weight
- Birth control pills
Irregular periods are also a common symptom of various medical conditions, such as:
- Uterine polyps or fibroids
- Pelvic inflammatory disease
- Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)
- Premature ovarian insufficiency
- Uterine or cervical cancer
- Hormonal imbalance
How do you diagnose and treat irregular periods?
First, Dr. Berman performs a physical and pelvic exam, including a review of your menstrual cycle and medical history. It’s helpful to record your period start and end dates as well as any symptoms on a calendar or phone app to bring to your appointment.
To diagnose your condition, she may perform one of the following tests:
- Blood tests
- Pap test
Dr. Berman then discusses the best treatment options based on your condition. This may include medications to balance your hormones or relieve pain. She may also suggest lifestyle changes to help regulate your cycle, or recommend a different birth control method if that’s the cause.
If your condition is severe and requires advanced treatment, Dr. Berman may refer you to a surgeon.
If you think your periods are abnormal, call Dr. Berman or book an appointment online for expert diagnosis and treatment.