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Today in Health & Wellness
HEALTH CONDITIONS

Dysmenorrhea

Overview
Symptoms
Risk Factors
Treatment and Management
Doctors to Consult
Overview

Dysmenorrhea is a menstrual condition characterized by severe and frequent menstrual cramps and pain associated with menstruation. It is highly regarded as a reason for interference in work and social activity among the female population. Dysmenorrhea may be classified as primary or secondary.

  • Primary dysmenorrhea - from the beginning and usually lifelong; severe and frequent menstrual cramping caused by severe and abnormal uterine contractions. Risk factors include obesity, nulliparity, smoking, family history.
  • Secondary dysmenorrhea - due to some physical cause and usually of later onset; painful menstrual periods caused by another medical condition present in the body (i.e., pelvic inflammatory disease, endometriosis, sexually transmitted diseases etc).
Symptoms
  • Abdominal pain and cramps
  • Low back pain
  • Pain radiating down the legs
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Fatigue and weakness
  • Headaches
  • Diarrhea
Risk Factors
  • Abnormal uterine contractions as a result of a chemical imbalance in the body
  • Endometriosis which often results in internal bleeding, infection, and pelvic pain
  • Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)
  • Abnormal pregnancy (i.e., miscarriage, ectopic)
  • Infection, tumors, or polyps in the pelvic cavity
Commonly Prescribed Drugs
Treatment and Management
  • Regular exercise reduces discomfort of menstruation
  • Eat a well-balanced diet
  • Drink lots of fluids
  • Avoid caffeine-containing food and beverages (e.g., coffee and colas)
  • Get an adequate rest
Home Remedies
Doctors to Consult
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