Irregular periods

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What causes irregular periods?

There are many causes of irregular periods. It is common for girls to have irregular periods for the first one or two years after menstruation starts- this usually settles down naturally over time.

If you have irregular periods, your doctor will usually take a history and perform an examination to check you for various conditions, including hormonal (endocrine) conditions such as thyroid disorders, PCOS and pituitary disease. Periods may stop completely due to pregnancy, breastfeeding and menopause. Other conditions that lead to fewer periods (or no periods at all) include- extreme dieting, weight loss, obesity, intense training, stress, chronic illness. Certain medications may also cause disruption to periods. If there is sporadic bleeding or spotting between periods, other causes such as infections may need to be ruled out.

If you have irregular periods, you may need investigations such as blood tests and a pelvic scan.  The treatment will depend on the underlying cause.

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