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Menstruation usually starts between the ages of 11 and 14 and continues into the forties or fifties. At first the periods may be irregular, but once they are established they usually occur in a fairly definite rhythm, at intervals of 21 to 35 days. In these regular cycles, there may be monthly variations of a few days, which are considered normal. Cycle length may be influenced by changes in climate or living conditions, or by emotional factors. Slight irregularities, especially if they occur over a period of time, may be warnings of disturbance of either the thyroid or pituitary glands, or of tumors of the uterus or ovaries.
Occasionally menstruation does not occur at puberty; this is known as primary amenorrhea. It may be caused by underdevelopment or malformation of the reproductive organs, or by glandular disturbances, which generally can be corrected by the administration of hormones.
General ill health, a change in climate or living conditions, emotional shock, or, frequently, either the hope or fear of becoming pregnant can sometimes stop menstruation after it has begun (secondary amenorrhea). If this cessation is of short duration, it is not a cause for alarm. If it continues over a long period of time, and there is also the problem of infertility, hormone treatments may be necessary.
men·stru·a·tion(men-strū-ā'shŭn), Avoid the misspellings and mispronunciations menestration, menstration, and other variants.
menstruationMenorrhea The discharge of blood and tissue or the process itself from the uterus at the end of a menstrual cycle, occurring at ±4 wk intervals, ±2 wks after ovulation. See Vicarious menstruation. Cf Amenorrhea.
menstruationThe periodic shedding of the lining (ENDOMETRIUM) of the womb (uterus) at intervals of about 28 days causing bleeding through the vagina of 3 to 7 days duration in the non-pregnant female. The purpose of menstruation is to renew the endometrium so that it is in a suitable state to ensure implantation of a fertilized egg (ovum).
menstruationsee MENSTRUAL CYCLE.
Patient discussion about menstruation
Q. preventing pre menstrual MIGRAINES. Has anyone come up with any good preventive medicine for migraines? Mine come systematically right before and during the menstrual cycle. My (male) neurolight in Paris didn't seem to see a linkk with migraines and my cycle - or offer any preventive advice. I take Relpax to relieve. Does anyone have a more natural or preventive solution?
Q. can you get poly-cystic ovarian syndrome when you still have your menstrual cycle?
Q. is it normal to get a nausous feeling around the time i would start my menstrual cycle?