What is a uterine hemorrhage?

A uterine hemorrhage is a case of excessive bleeding from the blood vessels inside the uterus. This bleeding is usually not related to menstruation, except in the case of anovulation, and is considered abnormal and a medical emergency occasion. The hemorrhage usually results in rapid bleeding that can cause a woman to lose so much blood that she goes into shock. Neoplasms, pregnancy trauma, and anovulation account for the majority of cases of abnormal bleeding in the uterus. Chronic or infectious diseases can also often cause uterine bleeding.

In most cases, uterine bleeding can last between two days and seven days. Teenage girls and adult women are mainly affected. However, a young girl or boy can experience uterine bleeding due to estrogen-related tumors, according to medical research.

Pregnancy-related bleeding includes postpartum bleeding and bleeding due to miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy. During postpartum hemorrhage, uterine contractions do not close the blood vessels in the uterus that have been torn by the abruption and delivery of the placenta. When these contractions are too slow or insufficient to stop the vessels from bleeding, hemorrhage occurs, causing some women to lose up to a quarter (0.95 liters) of blood. Ectopic pregnancies and miscarriages can lead to bleeding that is accompanied by severe cramping.

Conditions and infections such as shigella and pelvic inflammatory disease can sometimes cause bleeding in the uterus. Shigella is a type of food poisoning caused by bacteria. A sexually transmitted disease like chlamydia can also cause uterine bleeding.

Neoplasms, or abnormal tissue growth, can often cause uterine bleeding. The most common types of neoplasms include polyps, lesions, fibroids, and tumors. Often, uterine bleeding associated with some of these neoplasms can indicate uterine cancer. In rare cases, late tumors can form at the site where the old placenta once attached. These tumors, formally called placental site trophoblastic tumors, and related uterine bleeding can occur in an older woman who has gone through menopause.

Anovulation is the circumstance of having menstrual-like bleeding that is not a true menstrual cycle. This bleeding is usually extremely heavy and recurs regularly. Unlike true menstruation, this cyclical bleeding occurs without eggs being released from the fallopian tubes.

Lastly, medications and prescription medications can cause uterine bleeding, especially if the medication contains hormones. Hysterectomies, excisions, and other surgical procedures may be necessary to stop the cause of uterine bleeding. Diagnosis of the cause of the bleeding is usually done by ultrasound or biopsy.

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