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Pregnancy Isn't the Only Cause of Absent Periods

Updated on April 13, 2017
akanga1 profile image

I am a consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist at Macclesfield Hospital, in Cheshire, Northern England.

Pregnant until proved otherwise

One of the most-used lines in medical schools all over the world is this: "Any woman who walks into your consultation room is pregnant until proved otherwise." It is a piece of dry humour that may offend some people but actually carries a very serious message. One of the gravest errors a doctor can make is to miss a pregnancy. That kind of error can lead to extremely serious consequences, and finding out about possible pregnancy can, in most cases, be determined by a simple question: When was your last period? It does not matter whether the person is presenting with a seemingly unrelated ailment; let’s say, pain in the shoulder (you may want to order an X-ray). Just establish the status, even if she enters the room in a nun’s garb.

The other side of this coin, however, is the question of missed periods.

No periods; not pregnant. What's going on?
No periods; not pregnant. What's going on? | Source

Amenorrhoea Can Have Many Causes

There are several other causes of missed periods other than pregnancy. Amenorrhoea is the medical term for absent periods. Primary amenorrhoea is where a girl/woman has never had periods at all. This will be a subject of a separate article. In this article, we are going to look at secondary amenorrhoea, in which periods that had hitherto been normal, cease. On many occasions I have seen questions, even here on HubPages, about missed periods and pregnancy tests that have been repeatedly negative with a bewildered air of "what is going on?" Here are some of the possible explanations.

Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)

This is a fairly common condition, affecting many women to varying degrees of severity. The commonest manifestations of PCOS are being overweight/obese, increased body hair (hirsutism) and erratic periods. In a typical case of PCOS, the affected woman may find that her periods are unpredictable sometimes going several months without one. This particular feature tends to be masked by the use of the combined contraceptive pill. With the pill, the periods will arrive on time like clockwork. It is when the woman decides to come off the pill, usually because she wants to conceive, that this particular feature will be manifest. She may, in fact, believe she has conceived but a pregnancy test will show she is not pregnant. Were she to pursue this further, a hormone profile blood test and a pelvic ultrasound scan will clinch the diagnosis. Absent or erratic periods in polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) are caused by the abnormal hormone environment that underlies this condition. In the majority of cases, a successful reduction of body weight to a normal body mass index (BMI) will lead to a resumption of normal regular periods.

Thyroid dysfunction

This is not a common cause of missed periods but its importance lies in the fact that thyroid disease affects the functioning of many vital organs hence the need to be aware of the possibility of this being the underlying cause. Bothunder- and over-active thyroid disease can cause absent or erratic periods.

In underactive thyroid, the thyroid hormone is produced in insufficient quantities leading to a feeling of lethargy, cold even in warm weather, weight gain, dry and brittle hair and nails, low mood and, yes, erratic periods.

Excessive production of thyroid hormone tends to be characterised by, in the main, the opposite symptoms except for the issue with the periods. A sufferer will experience a sense of restlessness and even hyperactivity, palpitations, feeling warm and poor tolerability of heat, weight loss even though there may be increased appetite, occasionally hair loss, sweatiness and, yes, there may be erratic or absent menstrual periods in this case as well. A condition called Graves’ disease is the main cause of excessive thyroid hormone production.

In both under- and over-active thyroid, correcting the thyroid hormone problem leads to resumption of regular periods and resolution of the other symptoms.

Absent periods is a common occurrence among Marathon and other long distance athletes
Absent periods is a common occurrence among Marathon and other long distance athletes | Source

Excessive exercises

Up to a half of long distant runners and around 4 in 10 of professional ballet dancers will experience secondary amenorrhoea. Excessive exercises will tend to lead to the shutting down of the process in the part of the brain called the hypothalamus which control the menstrual periods. It is one of the ways that the body deals with the excessive energy expenditure that it is being put through. In the case of ballet dancers, the situation is enhanced by the fact that they tend to maintain a restricted calorie intake.  Once the athlete cuts down on her training or exercising, the periods will resume

Pituitary tumours

The tiny gland in the brain called the ‘Pituitary’ is responsible for production of a variety of vital hormones. One of the hormones is called Prolactin. Prolactin hormone is responsible for milk production. Sometimes a hormone producing tumour, usually small in size will develop in the pituitary and start producing prolactin hormone in ever increasing quantities. This will have the effect of suppressing periods and like a pregnant or breast-feeding woman, a person with this type of tumour will experience absent periods.  Prolactin producing tumours are overwhelmingly benign and treatment involves taking medication that suppress the production of the hormone. This is usually effective and periods will resume once the prolactin levels have dropped back to normal. A condition where there is excessive prolactin is generally called hyperprolactinaemia.

Cushing’s disease

This is an entirely different disease from the one described above. Another hormone produced in the pituitary gland is known as ACTH. When ACTH is produced in excessive amounts it, in turn, leads to excessive production of the steroid cortisol. This leads to the condition known as Cushing’s disease. The presentation of Cushing’s disease is rather dramatic with rapid weight gain, thinning of skin usually with easy bruising; stretch marks may appear on the abdomen and thighs and periods tend to stop. Cushing’s disease is part of the wide spectrum of what is known as Cushing’s syndrome, the common factor in all these being excessive cortisol in the body. This brings us to another cause of absent periods due to problems in the adrenal glands (below).

Adrenal gland problems

Adrenal glands which are perched on top of kidneys are vital for production of various hormones and other chemicals. These include the steroid cortisol. Sometimes cortisol producing tumours develop leading to the condition discussed above; i.e., Cushing’s syndrome. Among other things, Cushing’s syndrome will be characterised by cessation of periods (until the excessive cortisol situation is brought under control).

Another cause of Cushing’s syndrome is when the systemic steroids are prescribed to treat other diseases such as severe asthma or some types of arthritis.

Medications and drugs

Apart from steroids mentioned above, prolonged use of other drugs can lead to temporary cessation of periods.  Phenothiazines are drugs that are employed mainly as anti-psychotics in schizophrenia. Some are used in heart conditions and weaker ones are used for controlling nausea and vomiting. They include such drugs as Chlorpromazine, Thioridazine, Prochlorperazine etc. They are available in an array of different brand names. Long-term use of these drugs can lead to cessation of menstrual periods.

Metoclopromide is used mainly as an antiemetic (to control nausea and vomiting). It is therefore unusual for this to be taken for a prolonged duration and, in any case, it should never be used for more than three months. Side effects are rare but Metoclopromide can also cause temporary cessation of periods. Metoclopromide is more popularly known by the brand names Maxolon, Reglan or Pramin.

Cocaine is an illicit drug with many potential side-effects one of which could be absent menstrual periods. The problem tends to resolve spontaneously within a few weeks of the person coming off the drug.

Stress

Stress of the emotional kind can and does often cause missed periods. Events such as bereavement, exams, marital difficulties or even severe sustained stress at work could cause a woman to miss her periods, sometimes for several months at a stretch.

Anorexia nervosa

Anorexia nervosa, a serious psychiatric condition the hallmark of which is being severely underweight is almost always accompanied by absent periods.

Excessive weight loss starting from normal weight not associated with this anorexia can also lead to missed periods especially if the weight is lost rapidly over a relatively short period of time.

Obliterated uterine cavity

Menstruation is a result of breakdown of the lining of the womb. Sometimes, especially following the procedure dilatation and curettage (D&C), adhesions form within the uterine cavity effectively obliterating it. As a result, the woman may find that she does not get any more periods after undergoing this. The condition is known as Asherman’s syndrome. In some cases, it is possible to reverse this through surgery.

Premature ovarian failure

This can also be called premature menopause. It is estimated that up to 1% of women go into menopause before the age of 40. It is not clearly known why ovaries stop functioning at such an early age. Premature ovarian failure has been known to happen to girls in their late teens and early twenties. Often, the most notable symptom is disappearance of periods without any obvious explanation. A hormone profile blood test will usually clinch the diagnosis. Premature ovarian failure is usually irreversible.

Damaged pituitary gland

We discussed this little gland with regard to over-production of the hormones Prolactin and ACTH. There is another way that the Pituitary gland can come into the picture when a woman is experiencing absent periods. There is a condition known as Sheehan’s syndrome. This describes a situation where the Pituitary gland has been damaged by disease, trauma, radiotherapy or, in some cases, prolonged deficiency of blood supply to the gland as can happen when there is undue delay in correcting severe blood loss for any reason as can happen following childbirth (postpartum haemorrhage).

Post-pill amenorrhoea

Some women, after using the contraceptive pill for a prolonged duration will find that, when they come off, the periods do not resume, at least not for a few months. This is known as post-pill amenorrhoea. This can also happen after using other forms of contraception especially the injection Depo-Provera.

The final Word...

Now, this may appear like a long list. The main message for clinician is to always be diligent in taking the woman’s history when she presents with unexplained absent periods. The answer is often clinched there. For the affected woman, it is really to highlight the fact that there are many and varied causes of absent periods. For somebody who is sexually active, it is perfectly legitimate to rule out (or in) the possibility of pregnancy. When the pregnancy test is negative, it is prudent to get to see a doctor to establish what is going on especially because some of the underlying conditions require early intervention. Pregnancy isn’t the only cause of absent periods.

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    • akanga1 profile image
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      akanga1 5 weeks ago

      @Rachel

      It would appear you are not pregnant. You had unprotected sex but this was arguably in the least fertile phase of the cycle. More crucially, you have had multiple negative pregnancy tests. Whilst it is still possible to get falsely negative pregnancy test results, the modern test kits are so sensitive and accurate that this is becoming a rare occurrence. I am inclined to believe that, while not impossible, it is very unlikely that you are pregnant.

      My advice is for you to keep the doctor's appointment which is due in less than 2 weeks. The proper period might well arrive in the interim. Missed periods are really not that uncommon but, for obvious reasons, I am not able to tell you what the cause is in your particular case. If you get symptoms like pelvic pain, especially if localised, you will need to be seen promptly. I think that is highly unlikely.

      Best wishes

    • profile image

      Rachel 5 weeks ago

      My last period was july 2nd. I usually have regular periods. In August just a day or 2 before my period, my bf and I had unprotected sex and he did not pull out. Well I missed that period and now I have missed September. I have taken 3 pregnancy tests and all negative. I don't have sore breasts, however just last week 9/4 through maybe thursday or friday. I was spotting super light pink and only a few hours a day. I have taken another test today and negative. which the time i was spotting was around the time i would have gotten my period. I have a doc appointment but isn't until the 25th. I am asking for advice/help. Also I was getting really light cramps. some days a little more like period cramps but most of the time just really light cramps.

    • akanga1 profile image
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      akanga1 5 weeks ago

      @Julie

      I am very surprised that your doctors have not offered you tests to find out why you are not getting your periods. If this has been the case for as long as you say, hormone and imaging (scans) investigations have got to be done.

      Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is by far the commonest cause of prolonged absence of periods which can last many months at a time. However, I do not have anywhere near enough details about you to advise you whether that is the case here.

      You should arrange to see your doctor and insist that you want to get to the bottom of this.

    • profile image

      Julie 5 weeks ago

      Hi I haven't seen my period for months and years now I don't know what wrong with me every time I go to the doctor they always say nothing wrong with me but I can't see my period or get parganant what to do

    • akanga1 profile image
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      akanga1 5 weeks ago

      @Lisajm

      As you would have seen in this Hub, there are many causes of missed periods and premature menopause is only one of them. It is also the case that only roughly 1% of women go into menopause before the age of 40. It should, therefore, be low down on the list of possible causes. Also, you have not mentioned any of the other symptoms associated with evolving menopause.

      Whilst it is not possible for me to tell you what might have caused your periods to behave this way, on balance of probability, premature menopause is unlikely. Should this persist, you will need to see your doctor for examination and tests.

      Best wishes

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      Lisajm 5 weeks ago

      8 weeks now with no period, but daily only at night spotting which varys in old and new blood. Tubal litigation done in 08 and regular 21 day cycle. no pain or swelling. 35 years old. could this be early menopause?

    • akanga1 profile image
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      akanga1 5 weeks ago

      @Rehan

      Your wife used the oestrogen hormone tablet Gynaecosid when she missed her period. This tablet will normally provoke a withdrawal bleed when used and that is what it is marketed for. Unsurprising, the period has once again failed to arrive. Unsurprisingly because Gynaecosid does not address the cause.

      It is of course not possible for me to advise you on what the cause is as I do not have your wife's details. If missing periods is unusual for her, I would suggest that she is seen by a doctor to take a detailed history, an examination and determine whether and which tests are required to get to the bottom of this.

      Best wishes.

    • akanga1 profile image
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      akanga1 5 weeks ago

      @Romoke

      It remains my view that your current period and the accompanying symptoms are to do with the fact that you have come off the pill. The contraceptive pill is really quite effective in both regulating menstruation and masking any symptoms that would otherwise accompany the menstrual bleed. When you come off, especially if you have been on it for a long time, this can happen.

      I would expect all this to settle in no more than 3 or 4 days. However, if that does not happen, you should definitely see your doctor.

      Best wishes.

    • profile image

      rehan 5 weeks ago

      Hi...I just want to know my wife has missed her second period. after sex and before her period she used gynecosid tablets then she got her period of that month while now the next is absent and three days are on the due date?? can you guide me what will be a problem??

    • profile image

      Romoke 5 weeks ago

      Thank you so much for your quick response, the bleeding I had was small compare to my normal flow ,my mestral flow is always heavy coupled with clothing but this was little compare to my normal flow without clothing. As am speaking the leg pain,waist pain and headache has not ceased.sharp pain in my abdomen that comes and go,also with little cramp.

    • akanga1 profile image
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      akanga1 5 weeks ago

      @Wunmi

      It is actually unusual for a woman in their late 40s to continue having regular periods. At that stage, periods tend to be irregular and less predictable. This is because, in most cycles, ovulation does not take place. If you have been having regular periods, that will be because you have been on contraception, presumably a type of combined pill. Now that you have stopped using this, you are likely to see a much more erratic pattern to your periods. What you have seen this month does not necessarily mean your periods have 'stopped'. It is more likely that you will still get them but they will be much less predictable.

      However, it is also possible, even if less likely, that the menopause transition has already started and this was being masked by your use of hormonal contraception.

    • profile image

      Wunmi 6 weeks ago

      I'm 48yrs old and last month I had my period for 7days and didn't continue using my contraceptives. This month I was to see my period 4days ago and till now no show. My question is. Is it normal for a woman my age to stop seeing her period abruptly.

    • akanga1 profile image
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      akanga1 6 weeks ago

      @Romoke

      It is difficult to say. You have had a vaginal bleed 4 days after it was due by your dates. This could simply be a delayed period. This is a fairly common occurrence even if that has not been the case with you so far. In cycles where ovulation does not take place, a subsequent period can be delayed for several days. It is also possible that you may have been pregnant and you have had an early miscarriage. You have not said whether the bleeding was heavier than your normal period but that tends to be the case with miscarriage.

      There is also a possibility, albeit small, that you are pregnant still and the bleeding and cramps you have experienced are features of a 'threatened miscarriage'. That is unlikely but not impossible.

      If you have a strong feeling that you may have been or are still pregnant, the only sure way to know for certain is to perform a pregnancy test.

      Best wishes

    • profile image

      Romoke 6 weeks ago

      Had unprotected sex and supposed to see my period on the 1st but the period ceased, although I had several cramps as if it was coming with slight headache ,tiredness,tendel breast and more crave for sex, on the 4th I started having severe cramps again with some brownish discharge coupled with slight headache and dizzleness, on the 5th which is yesterday I started bleeding with serious cramps and leg pains but reduced today and the way it is the bleeding will stop by tomorrow am I really pregnant.though last month I was on typhoid medication wish lasted for just 5days.

    • akanga1 profile image
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      akanga1 6 weeks ago

      @liza

      I am afraid I did not understand your question. You have not had a period for over 3 months. Do you think you might be pregnant? If that is not possible for whatever reason then you need tests to find out why your period is that late.

      You have mentioned "a little lump on the left uterus". I am assuming you mean the left side of the uterus since you have only one uterus. How was that lump identified? Did you have an ultrasound scan? A 'lump' on the uterus is almost always a fibroid. A fibroid would not make you miss a period so that finding is unlikely to be clinically significant.

      I am sorry that I am unable to give you meaningful advice because the details provided are too brief

    • akanga1 profile image
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      akanga1 6 weeks ago

      @Saraa

      I'm not sure I understand the basis on which the doctors advised you. Did you have a pregnancy test or an ultrasound scan done? If these were done and were negative then you are clearly not pregnant.

      If you have not had a bleed for two months and a pregnancy test is negative that to me suggests that you were never pregnant in the first place and any advice that you "could have lost it" would be misleading. A pregnancy test remains positive even if the embryo or fetus ceases to be viable. That is until the pregnancy tissue has been expelled.

      You are clearly still in the dark as to what has caused you to miss your period and I think your doctors should be doing more in trying to give you an explanation by doing appropriate tests.

    • profile image

      liza 6 weeks ago

      hi..I missed again my period,my last cycle was last May26.but untill now no menstruation again.and i found out that on my left uterus has a little lump compared in the right and sometimes it is painful.also having headache always.

    • akanga1 profile image
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      akanga1 6 weeks ago

      @KellyA

      You have been on Clomid (Clomifene) which would indicate you are actively trying to conceive. Even though you have not given a lot of details, I would hazard a guess that you were started on this because tests showed that you are not ovulating regularly. That being the case, you may have experienced irregular periods also. That tends to be a fairly common feature in people with erratic ovulation. Polycystic ovaries (PCOS) is the commonest but not the only cause of this. I am therefore guessing that what you are seeing currently is a continuation of this.

      The other possibility is of course that you have successfully conceived. The vaginal spotting you have experienced would, therefore, be regarded as a threatened miscarriage. I would strongly suggest that you do a pregnancy test. If positive, an early ultrasound scan would be advised to establish status and location of the pregnancy

      Best wishes.

    • akanga1 profile image
      Author

      akanga1 6 weeks ago

      @SadeF

      Thank you for the additional information. Indeed, Mononessa is a type of combined pill which, besides being an effective contraceptive, should give you regular periods. This is not happening with you so this particular preparation appears unsuitable for you.

      I really don't think you are pregnant. My considered opinion is that pursuit of this line of inquiry can now be abandoned. As per my original advice, I would suggest you attend your local family planning facility to get your birth control arrangements reviewed with the aim of switching you onto a more suitable preparation.

      Best wishes.

    • profile image

      SadeF 6 weeks ago

      Thank you for your response. The pills I take are called Mononessa which is a combination pill. Even on this birthcontrol I've had the same things happen. Today is now day 11 and I have 3 negative pregnancy test. I just really need answers.

    • akanga1 profile image
      Author

      akanga1 6 weeks ago

      @DIvin

      Even though not foolproof, the emergency contraceptive or morning after pill is very effective. That is provided it is taken correctly. It would appear you are under considerable stress and this seems to be the most likely cause of your missed/delayed period. However, your avoiding to take the pregnancy test is clearly not helping and, if the period continues to be absent, this is the next logical step to take. I would suggest that you do the test even before seeing your doctor. It will clarify the picture a great deal.

      Personally, I am not a big fan of repeated reliance on the morning after pill. It is inherently anxiety inducing because you cannot be sure it has worked until the next period has arrived. There is more info here: http://www.pregnancy-bliss.co.uk/emergencycontrace...

      Best wishes

    • akanga1 profile image
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      akanga1 6 weeks ago

      @Elizabeth Kennedy

      I am unsure what the definitive diagnosis of your pregnancy loss was. You were pregnant but there was no fetal pole on the scan. Was there an empty gestational sac inside the uterus or was this absent too? The distinction here is important. If there was adefinite gestational sac but without a fetal pole, that makes it an 'anembryonic pregnancy', also known by the older term 'blighted ovum'. It would be OK to manage this expectantly as you did and eventual miscarriage is inevitable even though the interval to this varies. If there was no gestation sac, that will make the diagnosis 'Pregnancy of Unknown Location' or PUL. That is an entirely different diagnosis where expectant management would be deemed risky. This is because of the possibility of an ectopic pregnancy.

      Either way, it would appear the point at which the whole process concluded is unclear. With PUL, you could have persisting trophoblastic tissue in the body and this would continue to produce the pregnancy hormone hCG. This hormone would have the effect of stopping the normal cyclical hormonal pattern which can manifest in the form of completely absent periods or erratic bleeding, usually light.

      Of course, I am making a few assumptions here because I don't have all the details I would need. All in all, I would suggest that you arrange to see your doctor and a blood test for levels of the hCG hormone may be appropriate. If this is negative, at the very least this would eliminate the possibility of persisting trophoblastic tissue as being the cause of your symptoms.

      Best wishes.

    • akanga1 profile image
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      akanga1 6 weeks ago

      @SadeF

      It sounds like you have what is termed as 'dysfunctional uterine bleeding' or 'DUB'. Your periods are irregular and unpredictable. There is a crucial piece of information missing from the details you have provided. You say you are on 'birth control' but you have not specified which type. You should really not have irregular periods if you are on the combined pill. Your periods should be clockwork regular on that. However, if you are on the mini-pill or the Progestogen-only Pill, to give it its proper name, you can suffer from this type of unpredictable pattern.

      I think the answer to your issue may lie in reviewing your contraceptive choice to get one which suits you better.

      Best wishes.

    • profile image

      Divin 6 weeks ago

      Hi

      I took the morning after pill on the 2nd of July which was two weeks before my period

      I have experienced chronic fatigue and cravings for salty and sweet things and rapidly gained weight especially my tummy got swollen within a week after the morning after pill. I have been very stressed due to so many problems. I experienced red blood spotting which lasted only for few minutes if not seconds after wiping. I have been so scared to even take a pregnancy test or go to the doctor but definitely this coming week I will take the courage and go see a doctor however the chronic fatigue has stopped and am getting much better but still no sign of period and I am really worried! I have used the morning after pill before and nothing like this has happened before but this time is just different.

      Please help

    • profile image

      Elizabeth Kennedy 6 weeks ago

      I'm 29 years of age. I have 3 children already and had my first at 17. For the last 6years I had the mirena IUD and had it removed in October. I had a normal period in December from the 24-31. In February I found out in was pregnant but at my 10 week ultrasound the Dr couldn't find a fetal pole although all the tests were positive. I wasn't expecting to be pregnant just wanted to remove the IUD and find another birth control. I opted for a natural miscarriage instead of the d&c. The bleeding began on April 14and ended on may 21. I then bled for 7days in early June. My last day of my period post miscarriage was june 9,2017. I waited for my periods to become normal again. July 3rd blood occurred and then it was gone by the 4th. And then everytime we had sex I bled or spotted for 2 days. We only have sex once a week now because of what's going on with my body and its no longer fun. I haven't bled yet and its September 1st. I called my Dr and he kept saying just wait. But I just want to know nothing else is wrong with me and if I can still get pregnant at all. What should I do? How long does it take for a period to get back to normal post miscarriage? And can I demand my Dr run more tests on me?

    • profile image

      SadeF 6 weeks ago

      Hello, my last period was 7/23 and I had unprotected intercourse 3 days after it ended. I am on birth control and my period is now 9 days late. I have taken two test that come back negative. I am feeling all the symptoms of my period but I am not bleeding. I do have one child and since I've given birth my period has been doing it's own thing. Even before I started having sex again I was late 11 days before. I'm confused my period would come 4 days early or it would be 7-11 days late. I'm starting to get a little worried and I don't know what to do. I hope I explained my situation to where you could understand. Thanks in advance for your response.

    • akanga1 profile image
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      akanga1 7 weeks ago

      @Confused

      With you having just missed a period by a handful of days, pregnancy is still possible despite the negative test. Condoms are of course not the most reliable form of contraception and there are a number of ways conception can still ensue even if the condom has not broken.

      Whilst on a balance of probability this is simply a delayed period, something every woman will experience at some point or another, pregnancy is still possible even if unlikely.

      Much as this may seem unacceptably long to live with uncertainty, I would advise that you wait for another week at least. If the period has not arrived in that time, repeat the test. If still negative, see your doctor for appropriate tests to establish what is going on.

      Best wishes.

    • akanga1 profile image
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      akanga1 7 weeks ago

      @Raquel

      It is unusual (though not impossible) for modern pregnancy test kits to give a falsely negative result for a pregnancy that may be as advanced as 8 weeks (2 months). The likelihood is therefore that you are not pregnant.

      I'm having to make a lot of assumptions here since the information given is brief. I take it that your periods are usually regular and you are not on any contraception. If that is the case, look through the article again and see whether any of the mentioned causes of missed periods might apply to you. If not, the logical thing to do will be to consult your doctor.

      Best wishes

    • profile image

      Confused 7 weeks ago

      Hello, my last period was on July 31st, it was longer than usual lasting about 8 days. This month my period is late, it's been 32 days since my last period. I took a pregnancy test yesterday and it was negative. My boyfriend and I always use condoms and it never broke. I've always been regular and never missed a period and my periods have always come between 24-28 days. I've been feeling extremely nauseous these last few days as if I'm about to throw up. Could I still be pregnant? Or what could be causing my late period?

    • profile image

      Raquel 7 weeks ago

      HI

      I have not had my period in 2 months. Took a pregnancy test and it is negative. I feel so hormonal and tired and moody. I don't feel like myself, its like Im pms everyday. Please help!

      ..

    • akanga1 profile image
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      akanga1 7 weeks ago

      @Kelly,

      Yes, you could be pregnant. I am assuming you are not on any contraception and if so, yes, the symptoms are quite suggestive.

      Modern pregnancy test kits are quite sensitive and having a false negative test is quite uncommon. However, they are not infallible and occasionally you get a poor batch. You may, therefore, be pregnant despite the negative tests. It is obviously not a foregone conclusion and your period might still arrive. However, if this hasn't happened when you see your doctors next week, they will repeat the test and, if negative, they may arrange a blood test. This is foolproof as it measures the quantity of the pregnancy hormone hCG. Alternatively, they may arrange an ultrasound scan (or both).

      Best wishes.

    • akanga1 profile image
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      akanga1 7 weeks ago

      @Komal

      I doubt you are pregnant. If you have used protection and a urine pregnancy test has been negative, not once but twice, the likelihood of pregnancy is very low. Your period is delayed and you have had light bleeding so it may be one of those often difficult to explain menstrual changes which tend to be transient. However, if you have significant pain and especially if this is localised in just one part of your lower abdomen, it may be advisable to seek medical attention.

      Best wishes

    • akanga1 profile image
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      akanga1 7 weeks ago

      @Lina

      If you had unprotected intercourse in the background of a delayed period (by almost six weeks), it would not be possible to know whether that was a fertile phase of a cycle. As such, with it being almost 8 weeks since you had sex, the only way you are going to have clarity on whether you may have conceived or not is to perform a pregnancy test. If the test is negative, it will be time to take the next logical step which will be to see your doctor for tests to establish why you have not had a period for over 3 months now.

      Best wishes.

    • profile image

      lina 7 weeks ago

      Hi im 23 this year. Last got my period on the 25th of may 2017. did not have sex till the 4th of july and also did not get my menses after my last menses in may till this date. what should i do?

    • akanga1 profile image
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      akanga1 8 weeks ago

      @Kemi

      If you have not had a period for more than 2 months and pregnancy has been conclusively ruled out, you need to explore if any of the conditions discussed in this article may apply. From the brief information you have given, it may be worthwhile to have tests for a possible under-active thyroid.

      I would suggest that you see a doctor if the period has not arrived within the next month. Also, please remember there may be no significant underlying problem and the normal pattern could resume spontaneously. That is not uncommon.

      Best wishes

    • akanga1 profile image
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      akanga1 2 months ago

      @Gemini Leo

      I think the cumulative evidence is strong that you are not pregnant. I don't think a repeat test is necessary. A test kit which expired only in the last month ought to give pretty reliable results so I think you can relax. If your period has not arrived in the next month or so you should see a doctor to find out why this is so. However, pregnancy in this case is extremely unlikely.

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      Gemini Leo 2 months ago

      Sir,i tried with two testers they came out as negetive.how ever their experity date is last month (july 2017) .Is there any chance that i may be pregnant after few weeks?Do i have to try again ?Thank you so much sir.

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      akanga1 2 months ago

      @Gemini Leo

      Your additional details have been useful in getting more clarity. I think it is very unlikely you could be pregnant if indeed you had sex at the time of onset of your period. What is more, your next period arrived on time after 5 weeks as expected. These two facts make the probability of you being pregnant rather remote even though not impossible. I would still encourage you to do a pregnancy test even if the kit you received is expired. If it is only a couple of months out of date, it should still give you a reliable result. If you conceived back in May, even a poor kit will give you a positive results. A negative result can be trusted as confirming the fact that you are not pregnant.

      Regarding Cetirizine; yes, this like similar antihistamines, has been known to cause absent periods but this is a rare side-effect, affecting less than 1% of long-term users. It is therefore unlikely to be the cause of your absent/delayed period.

      Your weight gain, if it has occurred rapidly, could be significant. Rapid weight gain can be associated with disruption of hormone balance which can translate into delayed periods sometimes for several months.

      My best wishes.

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      Gemini Leo 2 months ago

      Sir, I also wanted to know if cetirizine tablet IP 10gms ill cause any delay in periods.I have been using it from 2 months to nulify my skin allergy .I also puton few kgs due to excessive eating(from 57 to 63kgs) and my breast kinda look growed i feel so embarrassed to tell u all these but i am 21 with smaller boobs.Considering all these and also the thing i have mentioned before that my partner ejaculated ,washed and then inserted and after few blows i had my vegina beleding and i am on my periods,the following month i got my period .So please tell me what is the % chance of me getting pregnant and if in case i am how many months prengnant i would be?I brought pregnancy testers from online yesterday but they are expired and i live in village like place with no medical shops .

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      Gemini Leo 2 months ago

      Yes,i had this problem earlier.I had my periods on time for the first 4 months after getting matured and then i had break for around 2 months and then on my periods delayed for a week or 5 days.But this is the first time i had sex and it kinda bothers me.But what i doubt is that i got my periods while having sex which means that i dont have an egg inside me to get fertilized .during the next month in around 14 days (if it is a 28 day cycle) another egg is released from the ovary and i had my periods when this happend but mine is a 35 days cycle.And i have read it from the net that sperms can live upto 5 days in female body.So please sir can you tell me if i made some sence in my explanation . what are the possibilities that can i can be pregnant.and for how many times should i so the urine test for my case. Thankyou very much for your fast reply this is helping me a lot.

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      akanga1 2 months ago

      @Gemini Leo

      Yes, it is possible that you could be pregnant but the picture is far from clear.

      Was the period you got in June 'normal', like your other periods or was it in any way different? You have not had periods for almost two months now. Is this the first time this has happened or have you had this happen before? It is unlikely you will get clarity from what I can advise you here. You really need to perform the urine pregnancy test to know for certain one way or another.

      Also, for the future, can I suggest that you try to avoid penetrative intercourse when you don't have condoms. A withdrawal method is a very unreliable form of contraception and penile insertion after ejaculation, however thoroughly wiped/washed, is particularly risky. There are live sperm in the male urethra which persist for hours after ejaculation. When the penis is inserted, these can and do find their way into the vagina

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      Gemini Leo 2 months ago

      I am 21 years old.last time i had sex with my partner is on 14th may.during this i found out i got my periods and insertion lasted for less than 3 minutes.(my partner made sure that he inserted after ejaculating and washing coz we r running outa condoms).i had my next period in june 20th and missing periods n the month of july and august.Is there a chance of being pregnant?If so how many months and how could i eliminate it?Please reply soonn...

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      akanga1 2 months ago

      @Mpho

      I'm afraid there are nowhere near enough details in your query. It's simply not possible for me or, indeed anybody else, to give any meaningful opinion or advice on the basis of this one brief sentence

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      Pebbles 2 months ago

      Thank you so much.. The best guidance I ever had from a doctor. God bless you!

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      akanga1 2 months ago

      @Pebbles

      Do I think you have endometriosis? No, I don’t. It’s not impossible but I have to say it is very unlikely. Whilst on the subject of endometriosis, I also need to remind you on the importance of context. Endometriosis can affect fertility mainly through increased risk of miscarriage and much less often via making it hard to conceive. However, this only happens in cases of relatively severe endometriosis. Most women affected by endometriosis have no fertility problems.

      With regard to the heavy periods, you may wish to consider using Tranexamic acid during the first three days of your period. This will reduce menstrual loss and has no impact on your ability to conceive.

      I do hope you will get the reassurance you need via an examination and appropriate tests. Don’t be surprised if all the test results are normal. That is not unusual.

      Best wishes.

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      Pebbles 2 months ago

      Thank you, Sir; the advice is really valuable and welcomed. With due respect to your time and space over here rather not for a long conversation, I take a bit more freedom to ask one more question. As I mentioned earlier, I used to get PMS moderately during the first day of the period and the day before it starts. Though I have mild pain occasionally, mostly the period would be peaceful and last for 4-5 days, the last two days of which just spot. The heavy flow will be there for the first two days, of which the first day is quite manageable where as the second day has its peak flow with significantly large clots, that makes the flow extremely unmanageable. This is the story for past 15 years. I was told by my Gynec that it is normal, just let it happen. She just investigated an ultra sound of the uterus, which only showed some mild swellings of the uterine wall. Nowadays when I go through the articles about infertility, they feature endometriosis as one of the causes of infertility and I am afraid I have the same. Intercourse is sometimes painful, not to that extent, may rather due to lack of lubrication I feel. I develop tummy fat as I gain weight. Please tell me now, can this be endometriosis? Or what it could be?

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      akanga1 2 months ago

      @Pebbles

      It is difficult to be certain as to whether the various symptoms you have experienced over time are directly related. If you have been trying to conceive for 16 months without success this should be investigated properly. For couples (where the woman is under 40) having regular unprotected intercourse, and that means 3-4 times a week, the expectation is that pregnancy will ensue in 80% of them within 12 months. The figure rises to 90% in 24 months. You and your partner will need to make the judgement on whether, after 16 months, you feel formal tests should take place. At 29 you of course have the luxury of time and may want to give it more time. It is entirely possible that this is simply a delay and there is no problem.

      It will be wrong for me to speculate on whether you have endometriosis or any other condition. For what it is worth, I can say there is no information here to suggest endometriosis. The two main clinical features of endometriosis are painful periods and painful intercourse and you have mentioned neither. Extreme tiredness can be associated with an under-active thyroid but there are several other symptoms that go with that that you have not mentioned.

      You clearly need answers for the various things you have experienced and the correct advice from me ought to be encouraging you to see your doctor for proper evaluation and tests that will be deemed appropriate.

      My best wishes.

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      Pebbles 2 months ago

      Hi there!

      I'm grateful for the quick response. I am sorry for the missed information in the previous comment. I am 29 years old and got married 2 years back. I'm trying to conceive for the past 1.4 years but without any success. Counting from the very first period at the age of 14, I have had really heavy periods with moderate PMS and anemia, and my Hb levels were varying between 10-12 g/dl. The situation is a bit better at present, but still, I feel extreme tiredness all the time and I wanted to establish a link between all these events. You seem to be really knowledgeable about many things, hence seeking your advice. Is it any Thyroid dysfunction? Chronic anemia? Endometriosis?

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      Libster27 2 months ago

      Wow - what quick response - Thank you! It's a shame ( but I'm

      Extremely grateful) that I've received more help and information from you than I have from my own GP. Thanks again!

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      akanga1 2 months ago

      @ Pebbles

      It appears to me the pattern of your periods is changing. I know that if you are used to clockwork regular periods such a change can be unsettling. However, the variation here is not much and therefore very unlikely to be of clinical significance. You have put weight on but this has been quite gradual, over a period of two years so, again, unlikely to be a contributory factor. Plus, even though the absolute weight has gone up, with a BMI of 21, you are still comfortably within normal range.

      You have not said how old you are. Such a change is quite common from the mid-30s onwards but can also occasionally occur a lot earlier. Everything considered, I think these are likely to be normal physiological changes. Best wishes.

      @Libster27

      Well, 84 days (12 weeks) is certainly a long time when you are used to having regular periods. Early menopause remains the main possible explanation for this despite the ‘normal’ blood test result. It may be worthwhile to dig deeper as to what specific test your doctors carried out. It is not unusual to find doctors checking for levels of Oestradiol (Oestrogen) in such cases. That test is very unreliable especially in the very early stage of menopause. The most reliable hormone test would be Follicular Stimulating Hormone (FSH). This hormone starts rising as you start going through the menopause transition and the rise tends to be steady upwards. If this is the one that was carried out (and was normal), you should get this repeated in 2-3 months even if you have seen a period. Your symptoms are certainly suggestive of menopause. The other possibility, on the basis of the symptoms, is a thyroid problem. You may wish to gently suggest this being checked when you see your doctors next time.

      I have not seen anything in the picture painted here to suggest anything sinister but I can understand your anxiety. I see that you are in the UK. You certainly shouldn’t be made to wait till the 17th of September unless this is to see a specialist. The appropriate tests can be done by your GP and you shouldn’t have to wait more than a couple of days to see them. My best wishes.

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      Libster27 2 months ago

      Hi. I've read your article with interest. I'm 41 and concerned. My cycle has always been 28 days. 3 months ago I went to the Dr as my cycle was getting longer, 35 days etc. I explained my Mother went through the menopause in her 40's and wondered if I was heading the same way ( night flushes, moody, anxiety. My husband has had a vasectomy so that rules out pregnancy. They did a normal blood test which they said was 'normal'. I'm now on days 84 and there is no sign of my period. I have lower back 'ache', my heart races sometime at bedtime (not for the obvious reasons either!) I'm extremely tired and I get cramping in my lower abdomen- as though my period is on it's way... but nothing! I'm going to go back to my Drs but they don't have an appointment available until 17th September!! Is this a sign of something more sinister? :(

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      Pebbles 2 months ago

      I have a regular 28-day cycle. Since the past 6-8months there is a delay of 3-5 day and twice within last six months, I missed it for more than 10 days. I had a missed period for 15 days last time with nausea and fatigue.I also experienced stomach cramps. All the times I ruled out pregnancy. I gained weight over the past two years, from 50 to 60kgs. My height is 168 cm. Recently I developed itchy breasts and a pulling sensation around the lower neck towards the upper rib region. What could be the possible reason for these changes?

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      akanga1 2 months ago

      @Benria

      You are used to have reliably regular periods hence your anxiety about the missed period. You had sex on the 8th of July which was perilously close to the most fertile part of the cycle. It was Day 12 of that cycle. That means your chances of conceiving were rather high.

      I am by no means saying you are pregnant but absence of pregnancy symptoms at what would be a very early stage is not unusual. If your period has not arrived in another week or so, you need to repeat that test. If it is negative, you are probably not pregnant and there is another cause for your delayed/missed period. In such a case, you may wish to consider seeking medical attention for appropriate tests. Best wishes.

      @Rossy

      I’m afraid the information you have given is far too brief for me to give you any useful advice. I’ll be happy to try to help if you were to give more details

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      Rossy 2 months ago

      Pls help me I hv bn spotting with lower abdominal pain for 2 weeks now

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      Benria 2 months ago

      Hi Doc

      I had my period on the 28th May and 27th June... I had unprotected sex 1st and 8th July but took emergency pills...my period was supposed to come 27th of this month from my menstral calculator but I have not seen it....done two tests and it all came out negative...am not having any sign of pregnancy and am confused because if am pregnant it supposed 2 have manifested both in signs and test...pls what could be wrong am five days late already..... Thanks

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      akanga1 2 months ago

      @Bb doux

      I am not sure what you mean when you say “I had sex but no contact with sperm”. If you mean your partner did not ejaculate inside of you, that could be a serious misconception. Withdrawal is proven to be a very poor form of contraception. This is because a small amount of sperm is produced before the main ejaculate that is seen at the time of male orgasm. This sperm does pass into the vagina during intercourse and it is certainly possible to get pregnant through this.

      If your period is overdue by several days, I would advise you to do a urine pregnancy test to establish whether you are pregnant or not. The ‘severe low back pain' you described is not really a feature of early pregnancy so I can’t use that to suspect pregnancy. Since you are sexually active and have missed a period, something that is presumably unusual for you, you do need to actively rule out pregnancy. Do the pregnancy test.

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      Bb doux 2 months ago

      Hi there

      I had no period this month.

      I had sex but no contact with sperm

      And i have hemorrhoid and i suffer from constipating.

      My worry is that i didn't get my mense and am having sever lower back pain but am not pregnant

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      akanga1 2 months ago

      @ Jackie

      Do I know why your periods appear to have stopped? No, I don’t. It would seem you are not pregnant from the results of the pregnancy tests and the absence of any other symptoms associated with early pregnancy.

      You would have seen from the article above that there are many possible causes of cessation of periods, usually as a transient feature. Based on the limited information given I am not in a position to say with any degree of confidence what the cause in your case could be. Your plan of seeing your doctors is the correct one and hopefully they will examine you and carry out the appropriate tests to give you the answers. Best wishes

      ***************************

      @Portia

      Your period is late by over two weeks and you have symptoms of early pregnancy. Despite the negative pregnancy tests, you might still be pregnant. It is conceivable that those could be false-negative results.

      If you think the possibility of pregnancy is high (i.e. you are sexually active and are not on contraception) then you may wish to wait for when your next period is due which would be in less than 2 weeks. If that one too does not arrive, you should do another pregnancy test. If that is negative or inconclusive, it will be time to bring this to the attention of your doctors. A blood test and/or ultrasound scan will be able to bring clarity on the matter. If you can’t wait that long, these tests can be done now.

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      Portia 2 months ago

      Hi

      I missed my period which was supposed to come on the 8th of July ( this his never happened to me before) I took 3 pregnancy tests, 2 were negative and the other inconclusive.

      I am constantly nauseas especially when I get very hungry, the smell of perfume and fabric softener makes me sick.

      What could be wrong with me.

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      Jackie Brown 2 months ago

      Hi my name is Jackie I am a 23 year old female I have a 4 year old daughter. I usually have regular periods but they stopped suddenly over 2 months ago. I have taken pregnancy tests and gotten a blood test both were negative. Besides no period the only other symptoms I have is a sore stomach on the left side and same with my lower back, that could be caused (well at first I thought it was) because I broke my left ankle recently and have been immobile for a long period of time, however my periods were regular and stopped towards the end of my recovery . I will be going to the doctors to investigate further but I am worried. Do you know what this could be?

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      akanga1 3 months ago

      @Heather S

      Your twins were born over 30 months ago. You did not breastfeed yet your breasts continue to produce milk. There is clearly an issue here. You mentioned the use of ‘recreational’ drugs. This may be directly significant in this matter. You have not said which specific drugs you use but both opioids and amphetamines are known to induce increased prolactin hormone production. Prolactin is responsible for the production of milk. Raised prolactin is also one of the causes of absent periods as explained in the article. I think this is the area to focus upon.

      Best wishes.

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      Heather S 3 months ago

      Hi. My last period was April 27th 2014. I was pregnant and my twins were born on 1/14/15. I still have not had a period so it's been over three years. I have also been lactating since I became pregnant but I never breastfed. I do use recreational drugs which I'm embarrassed to mention. Could this be the cause of the missed period and lactating or could it be an underlying problem?

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      akanga1 3 months ago

      @Omotola

      One aspect of your account caught the eye: The fact that you are still secreting breast milk. This should not be the case almost 5 months after you stopped breastfeeding. It may be nothing but there is a possibility that, for some reason, the level of the hormone Prolactin (responsible for milk production) is still high or has started rising again.

      I would suggest that you wait for another month. If the period does not arrive still, it will be time to seek medical attention and a blood test for Prolactin level can be done for a quick clarification of this part of the picture.

      Best wishes.

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      Omotola 3 months ago

      Hi,

      I weaned my son in February and i got my first period since i was pregnant of him which is 2 years after.

      I had my period regularly till june.

      Dates are:

      1st march

      2nd April

      5th May

      5th June

      now this is July 12th and I've missed my period. I have had 3 pregnancy test all negative but i am still so worried although i noticed recently that i am still secreting breastmilk.

      What could be wrong?

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      akanga1 3 months ago

      @Natasha

      Not sure why you want me to ‘wish you luck’ regarding your forthcoming gynae review. I would have thought professional help is something to look forward to positively. Anyway, I digress.

      Absent periods for over 8 months without any obvious explanation is something that needs to be investigated. You suspect stress being the cause. It may very well be. Are there any specifics you should mention? Well, if there are stressful situations you have and maybe continue to endure then these should be known to your specialist. You have read the article above and the various causes of absent periods. Do any of the features apply to you? If there, make sure you mention them. Most causes of cessation of periods can be established or ruled out quickly with appropriate blood tests and/or imaging tests, typically, an ultrasound scan.

      In your case, it is not only the issue of absent periods but the fact that you are trying to conceive. Absent periods almost invariably mean you are not ovulating either. There is therefore the imperative to get to the bottom of this before you can realistically expect to conceive. I’m confident that a decent specialist would sort this for you and therefore you don’t really need me or anybody else to wish you luck but my best wishes in your quest.

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      Natasha 3 months ago

      Dear Doc, I haven't had a period since October 2016. I'll see my Gynae next week Wednesday, wish me luck (ps I think its stress related however if any specifics I should mention?) I'm sexually active and never use any contraceptive in my life. I have a miscarriage at the age of 22 and had my son at the age of 25 ( yes we tried for 2 years) now 3 years later we've been trying for a year. No period no baby

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      akanga1 3 months ago

      @Kaiti

      A pregnancy loss, whether this is a miscarriage or a stillbirth should not cause delayed or absent periods. Typically, menstruation would resume within 4 to 6 weeks of the pregnancy loss. That’s unless you start using a contraceptive that is meant to be bleed-free. I would definitely urge you to see your doctor as soon as possible for appropriate tests to be conducted

      *******************************************************

      @Dani

      Strictly speaking, what you are describing are very light rather than absent periods. I am not sure I would regard that as a problem. Unless you are having other changes, this is in all probability nothing significant. It is also unclear and probably unlikely that the change in your sleep pattern is related to the change in your menstrual pattern. In any case you may wish to arrange an appointment with your doctor for a more comprehensive look at these issues.

      Best wishes

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      Dani 3 months ago

      My period is on time, with a 27 day cycle. But i m having no bleeding , just spoting for 5 days. I have also noticed that i wake up on my own 3 hrs early then my usual timings. Urine test indicates negetive pregnency. What is wrong with me

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      kaiti 3 months ago

      I lost my baby 2 years ago and haven't started my period yet, is there something wrong I should see a Doctor for that?

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      akanga1 3 months ago

      @Tolani

      I think there is nothing for you to worry about. Menstrual cycles can fluctuate and looking at the details you have given, there was an interval of exactly a month between your two periods in question. Even though this may be a departure from what is normal for you, it does not mean there is anything wrong. If the pregnancy test has remained negative, the possibility of this being false negative is quite low. I think you can relax

      **********

      @jib23

      I agree with your doctor. Stress is the most likely explanation for the delayed period. If you have not had sex, you cannot possibly be pregnant. Preparations for a wedding can be quite stressful emotionally and I suspect this is the reason here. My best wishes for your forthcoming nuptials

      **********

      @Luna

      Having no periods for seven years during your teens and when you are not on any contraception is not normal. This is something that needs to be investigated. I do not have any details about you for me to form an opinion as to what might be the cause here and do not wish to speculate. Since you have had an occasional period, this is what would be described as secondary amenorrhoea. Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is by far the commonest cause of secondary amenorrhoea. I don’t know whether this is the case with you as I don’t have nearly enough details about you to form an opinion. This is something that is easily investigated and I would urge you to see a doctor as soon as possible for appropriate test. From your IP address, you appear to live in the United States. You should have no problems getting this resolved quickly.

      Best wishes.

      **********

      @tena

      Your story is rather confusing. I am not sure you were ever pregnant. It appears from the rather confusing details that when you had an ultrasound scan, there was no evidence of pregnancy. Instead, your ovaries showed features consistent with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) or polycystic ovarian disease as is sometimes called. As you may have seen in the article above, this is one of the commonest causes of missed periods. It seems to me this is the issue here. I also get the impression that you are keen to get pregnant. You may need to consult your doctors about this matter specifically so you can get the help you need in this regard. If indeed you have PCOS, that condition can be make it harder to get pregnant and in some cases ovulation induction medication is required to assist in this matter.

      Another issue that I need to correct is the misleading information you appear to have obtained from the internet. The medication that was prescribed by your doctors called ‘Dear21’ is simply a form of combined contraceptive pill. It is a combination of the progesterone ‘Levonorgestrel’ and an oestrogen ‘Ethinyl-oestradiol’. It is really the commonest type of contraceptive pill used across the world but appears in different brand names. Of course you should not use this if you are actively trying to conceive. However, the contraceptive effect stops as soon as you stop using the pill so the information you have that “you can’t get pregnant for 3 years” is nonsense.

      Regarding PCOS, you can read up on this condition here: http://www.pregnancy-bliss.co.uk/PCOS.html

      **********

      @CHAVI

      You have never missed a period and suddenly this has happened. You are right in suspecting pregnancy. However, if you have had unprotected intercourse on a regular basis i.e. three to four times a week for five years without getting pregnant, my main focus would be why it has not happened in all that time. That history makes pregnancy less likely though not impossible in this case.

      If the pregnancy test was negative I would be inclined to wait for another month. If the period does not materialise and the pregnancy test is still negative, it would be time to get the absence of periods investigated. Your doctors will then be looking at any of the numerous potential causes discussed in the article above.

      Best wishes

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      Luna 3 months ago

      I've got an unusual period at the age of 18, close to 19. For the past 7 years, I have not had a period. I had one for a few months before it suddenly stopped entirely. Occasionally I brown or pink, but it is only for less than a few hours. I've never had sex, nor done anything with anyone.

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      Tolani 4 months ago

      My son is about 9mths old, i have had a regular 28days menstrual cycle,my last period was on the 15th may i was supposed to be due for another on 10 june but no sign of period until 15th june i noticed quite an amount of mucus accompanied with brown blood which by the second day turned bright red but this amount of blood discharge is not as much as what i get on my normal periods.. the doc told me i probably just lost a pregnancy, i am worried tests came back negative although during my last pregnancy it took me 2months for a positive preg result to finally show, and i continued to bleed till i was exactly 4mths gone.. i am worried could i be pregnant again or there is no need to worry?

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      Julaiha 4 months ago

      Lost of menstration and is not pregnant

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      akanga1 4 months ago

      @Miss D

      The picture you paint does strongly suggest the possibility of Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS). 16 is a fairly late age to have your first period and the erratic nature of your periods since, with prolonged phases of absent periods certainly points that way. I know being overweight is one of the common features of PCOS but not every affected woman would be so. There are many women with PCOS who have a normal weight. I would suggest that you see a specialist and request specifically for the tests (hormone profile and ultrasound scan) to check whether indeed you may have this condition.

      @beautiful

      Your details are very brief and therefore difficult to work out what the problem might be. However, assuming you are also not getting periods and, if that is so, and you have breast engorgement and discharge (is this milky?), then the condition 'Prolactinaemia' is a possibility. This condition is discussed in the article above under the sub-heading 'Pituitary tumours'.

      Best wishes.

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      beautiful 4 months ago

      i feel pregnant,i vomit my breast excreat fluids for 6 months now but the pregnancy result are negative.whats happenin

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      Miss D 4 months ago

      Doctor, am 22.and I started my period when I was 16. My period has then being irregular. It comes like 4-5 times in a year. And I haven't seen it for over 5 months now. Have gone for test and am not pregnant. I am not over weight, am not stressed. No form of std. What could be wrong? Please get back to me as soon as u can.

      Thanks

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      Briana.M 4 months ago

      Im 21 and im not on birthcontrol, but ive not had a period in years. But i am suddenly spotting with weird discharge. Why?

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      akanga1 5 months ago

      @nerdycatt

      You seem to be having irregular and erratic periods and not completely absent periods.

      It is of course difficult for me to be precise on what this could be as I've nowhere near enough information. In any case, this may not have any significant underlying issue especially at your age. You have mentioned gaining weight. If there has been much weight gain, that could be significant. However, if your BMI is normal, then that can't be the issue. If all your hormone profile blood tests have been normal (these should include FSH, Prolactin and Testosterone) then then there is probably not much to worry about. Polycystic ovarian syndrome remains the commonest cause of erratic periods especially in young women like yourself.

      You can calculate your BMI here: http://www.pregnancy-bliss.co.uk/BMIcalculator.htm...

      Best wishes.

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      nerdycatt 5 months ago

      hi, im 18 yrs old and i havent had my period in about 3 to 4 months now. ive taken several hpts and theyve all been neg. i have a normal thyroid level, and no stds of any kind, (ive gone to the drs for those tests) , everything seemed normal. ive never had irregular periods until around last September and since then ive only had maybe 3 during that time till now. the drs have taken blood tests and they all came back neg. right now i feel tired, bloated, like im full so i dont eat very much but ive been gaining weight, my breasts feel sore every once in a while. and my lower stomach sometimes has shooting pains that go into my viginal area. i dont have brown discharge, its still clear like normal, but i still dont know what to do. im positive im not pregnant. any advice?

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      akanga1 5 months ago

      @Billi79

      Your long standing history of irregular periods does strongly suggest a hormonal issue as the underlying cause of the picture you describe. Absence of periods for the last year seems to be a progression of the same phenomenon you have experienced over the last two decades or so. On the face of it, Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) would be the main suspect but a normal pelvic ultrasonogram makes this less likely (but not impossible). Other hormonal abnormalities as detailed in the article are also possible and need to be actively ruled out. Also, at 38 and with no periods for a year, premature ovarian failure (POF) is a possibility. I am not sure what blood tests you have had but for POF, the level of the hormone FSH would normally clinch the diagnosis. FSH would be significantly raised in such a case.

      I hope you are able to get clarity on your situation soon.

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      Billi79 5 months ago

      Just curious on thoughts, I am 38 years old when my cycle started as a teen I would have 2 cycles per month at 19 they started skipping few months here or there.now at 38 I haven't had a cycle in over a yearnd have started experiencing discomfort in the lower stomach. All blood tests have come back normal. Same with the pelvic sonogram, it was normal.

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      Ishita 5 months ago

      I'm 27 old from 10 weeks I don't get my period but the pregnancy test shows negative,am I pragnent or some disease infected to me?

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      akanga1 5 months ago

      Hi Josie,

      Thank you for posting a query.

      Unfortunately there are very brief details so I'm unable to give you any meaningful advice. As detailed in the article (which you would have read), there could be many possible causes of missed periods. If none of these seem to apply to you and you are certain you are not pregnant, it would be best to consult your doctor for some tests.

      Best wishes.

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      Josie 5 months ago

      I'm going on 3 months of no menstural im 29 and never had a abnormal mensteral in my life

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      akanga1 7 months ago

      @Jen flores

      You said you had a normal period in January (last month). You haven't said when exactly in January you had the period so it is not possible for me to calculate how many weeks you have gone without a period. In any case, it appears you have only missed one period and it may be the case that it is too early for an ultrasound scan to detect a pregnancy. Unfortunately because the information you have given is not precise enough, it makes it difficult to advise more specifically. As I said, it is still possible that you are pregnant and you may need to wait another 2-4 weeks before repeating the pregnancy test and/or scan. If this is still negative, you will need to see your doctor for a proper consultation, examination and appropriate tests.

      My best wishes

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      akanga1 8 months ago

      @Mommaof3littles

      Thank you for your query

      Most likely the MRI is to search for a possible pituitary adenoma. These are relatively common benign tumours which develop in the pituitary glands. Sometimes the adenomas produce hormones which can stop periods and/or cause milk production from breasts. It is unclear what blood tests you had done but I would guess one was to check for levels of the hormone Prolactin. Since you said all the results were normal, a functional adenoma producing Prolactin is unlikely but not impossible. This can happen with a 'false negative prolactin test'. It is a complicated pathophysiological phenomenon whereby a person has high levels of prolactin and the attendant symptoms (such as milk production and absent periods) but the prolactin blood test is negative.

      Doing the pituitary MRI will help you and your doctors get clarity on whether your absent periods are due to a pituitary problem.

      My best wishes.

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      Mommaof3littles 8 months ago

      I am 36, my husband is snipped so we aren't trying for more. In December I was 7 days late and lactating in one breast. They did a mammogram and ultrasound and tons of blood tests. Everything came back normal but my pregnancy test showed a low amount of hcg. It didn't change from week to week but stayed the same. They ordered me a brain MRI scan without contrast to look at my pituitary gland. It is now February 6 and I haven't had a menses since December 9th. Not lactating but nauseous exhausted foggy and lethargic. My MRI is thirsday. What could they be looking for?

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      akanga1 8 months ago

      @lsaly. Sorry to hear about your loss. That must be harrowing. I hope you do find peace in time.

      It is difficult to be certain as to what is causing the symptoms you describe. However, it is probably nothing serious and is likely to be a self-limiting issue. Erratic unpredictable 'periods' in the weeks following delivery is by no means unusual. Ovulation may not resume for 6-8 weeks, even longer, for those not breast-feeding and not on contraception. The consequence of this is unpredictable bleeding. The bloatedness could be a consequence of the prevailing hormonal environment in the body at the time. Progesterone levels, when high, tend to cause this. Hopefully your period has arrived by now (since I'm responding 4 days since you posted the query). If not and if the symptoms are persisting, you should bring this to the attention of your doctor. An ultrasound scan and some hormone profile blood tests may be required. However, I need to reiterate my original view on the basis of limited information I have that this probably is something that will resolve on its own relatively shortly. Best wishes.

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      Isaiy 8 months ago

      hi,.I had a csection on 16 nov 2016 but baby passed away after 7 days. i had my 1st period on 18 dec 2016 and over on 24th dec it was really a heavy mens this one.. we had unprotected sex on 25,31 dec and 4th jan. after three days i had brownish spotting which lasted 2 days.my mens is still due am 5 days late.am having severe headache,white discharge,bloating, heavy breasts,lower abdominal pain and low back ache. did 3 pregnancy tests all came out negative.what should i do please help...

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      akanga1 9 months ago

      @cagd

      Hi, thank you for your query. I'm afraid I don't agree with your doctor. You cannot simply induce a 'period' before trying to establish why the periods stopped in the first place.

      From your details, you are almost certainly not pregnant but your plan to have a pelvic ultrasound scan is the correct one. This will likely confirm absence of pregnancy but may shed some light on exactly what is going on. It is also possible that the scan will be negative but that will not have been a wasted effort. Sometimes you reach a diagnosis by exclusion. As detailed in the article, quite a number of causes of changed or absent periods are not in the pelvis and that might turn out to be the case with you.

      I would certainly not recommending trying to induce a period before this change in the periods pattern has been properly investigated.

      Best wishes.

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      cagd 9 months ago

      Hi, I'm 34 and have had regular periods. The last I had a regular period was October 11.

      In November I got it a week early on November 2nd but it was not a regular period, I was only spotting very light pink and it lasted 11 days.

      In December I started spotting again on December 6th but this time it lasted 16 days. There were random 3 days out of the 16 days that my period was light to medium but very light pink.

      During these irregular period I've had pregnancy symptoms but pregnancy home test has all been negative.

      My husband then started to notice that my stomach has gotten firm around my belly button area. I am plus size so you can not easily tell by looking but we can feel it when I am laying down on my back. I have consistent uncomfortable pain on top of my pelvic bone, lower abdomen, sore under my ribs, sore breast and I feel pain in my stomach from even just lifting groceries.

      I finally went to my Doctor, got blood work and that came back negative as well. It is now January 15th and my period hasn't shown up I had a tiny very light pink when I wiped January 13th.

      The doctor said we should induce my period. I told her I do not feel comfortable doing that and would like to get an ultrasound. I feel like she thinks I'm crazy as she said my stomach pains are from being full and she felt nothing in my stomach. I'm still getting an ultrasound tomorrow because I want to be 100% sure. If I am not pregnant that is okay but I obviously feel pain and would like to know what is causing it.

      I was reading your post and you said ‘Any woman who walks into your consultation room is pregnant until proved otherwise’. Do you think my doctor was right telling me to induce my period without an ultrasound?

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      akanga1 9 months ago

      Hi Laura,

      Skipping a period in the first few months after delivery is not all that unusual. The regular cycle may not re-establish for a number of months in some cases. If the periods were to remain absent for several more weeks, let's say 6-10, then you may wish to bring that to your doctor's attention. For now, I really wouldn't worry. The episode of a mucousy discharge is also unlikely to be significant especially if it has not persisted

      Hi Katie,

      17 months is a long time and you really need to see a doctor about this. There could be a number of possible causes in your case. A thyroid problem is one possibility of course. Other possible causes would be premature ovarian failure. I don't know your age but this could happen to any woman at any age. You don't need to panic as this is unlikely but clearly needs to be ruled out with appropriate tests. You mentioned that you had a 'bad infection' after your caesarean section. Did this affect the womb? This is because we have to think of the possibility of Asherman's syndrome which is described above. All in all, I think it is important that you bring this to the attention of your doctor now. This will bring clarity to the picture, give you peace of mind and, in all probability, will be found to be something that can be easily corrected. My best wishes.

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      Katie 9 months ago

      Hi doctor. Im currently in my seventeenth month post baby via c section and still no period. I ceased breast feeding at three and a half months due to the fact I was on antibiotics after my childs birth she could not have in my breast milk from an mrsa positive swab and complications with my stitches resulting in a bad infection. She never latched so I pumped and dumped until the antibiotics were completed but by this time she was a bottle baby. I continued to pump and feed her breast milk until almost four months when I gave up because without her actively feeding I was unable to produce. Anyway, I am not sexually active at all, and I am concerned because there has not even been an inkling of my cycle returning. I also seem to show some signs of the overactive thyroid effects yo described. Im hot all the time and sweaty. Have trouble falling and staying asleep. Severe morning headaches, along with fatigue etc. Any advice or ideas what it may e?

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      Laura Davila Juarez 9 months ago

      Hello I just had baby 2. I'm not breastfeeding but i just missed my third period. My first period came in at 10 weeks postpartum. I have read that your body may be adjusting but I had two normal periods already! Negative pregnancy test!! I just notice like a week ago a lot of mucus clear discharged I was amazed of how much? What could be wrong?

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      akanga1 11 months ago

      Hi Tilly,

      I can understand your confusion and anxiety. If you have missed periods and the FSH level has been found to be raised albeit modestly, there is a legitimate concern about the possibility of premature ovarian failure. I do not know what age you are but, if under 40, then this will need to be actively explored as a possibility. Just one high FSH reading can never be used to make a conclusive diagnosis. You will therefore need to have the hormone profile blood test repeated, ideally with at least a two months interval from the original. It is entirely possible that the current absence of periods is due to other transient causes so a definitive explanation cannot be given right now. My best wishes.

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      Tilly 11 months ago

      Hi,

      I had my second son in June this year. Tragically he passed away at 15 days old due to a heart condition. We have previously fell very quickly with both our sons and I have had no problems with my periods at all until now. I have had no period since giving birth. I had my bloods tested and my fsh was 36 and my lh 21. All other levels were fine apart from ferritin which was a little low at 39. I have also been experiencing a lot of hair fall and obviously a lot of stress. The male doctor at my practice said I was menopausal but the female doctor wasn't so sure. I am finding it hard to get my head round being pregnant to then being menopausal?! I have no other symptoms of being menopausal other than lack of periods and the high test results. Could it be something else going on?

      Thank you in advance.

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      akanga1 11 months ago

      Hi Cathy,

      Congratulations for that weight loss which I assume was deliberate. You are right in saying that this cannot explain the absent periods since your BMI remains within the normal range.

      I am not sure how comprehensive the hormone profile blood test you had was. As you can see from the list of potential causes of absent periods, sometimes extensive tests are required to get to the bottom of the issue. The hormones that should almost always be checked in a case like yours (once pregnancy has been excluded) are LH, FSH and Prolactin. This is to check for the relatively common causes. If these come back normal, then further tests are required and ideally your GP should refer you to a specialist for a detailed look at the whole picture. This is unlikely to be something serious but, for peace of mind, you need evidence for whatever form of action a doctor may advise. Best wishes.

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      Cathy 11 months ago

      Hi, I have had regular periods from the age of 13 and am now 30! I have had 4 children (all delivered by Caesarian). My youngest child is now 2, I haven't had a period for 9 months! Were regular after last child. I have visited my doctors surgery and saw a nurse practitioner who sent me for blood test which all came back normal!!

      I have however lost over 6 stone but my bmi is still within the healthy range at 20 so I don't see why this would be the cause!! I just want some reassurance that it is nothing to worry about! TIA

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      akanga1 11 months ago

      Hi Anne,

      Yes, I think a review by a gynaecologist will be a good idea but it is not an emergency. The picture you paint is vaguely suggestive of polycystic ovarian syndrome. However, I do not have enough details here to declare that with confidence. The stress you describe could also be muddying the waters to some extent. I think a pelvic ultrasound scan and a hormone profile blood test should help bring clarity.

      Best wishes

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      anne 11 months ago

      I am going to be 21 after 2 months.Until September I was having regular periods .pretty regular only 2-3_days here and there but since then I had had no periods that would be 2 missed cycles (It was due on 3/4 of month).However somewhere in late mid october I did bleed but for once like just little a thick brown something and reddish tinge in pot after i peed .I have never had sex.Years ago I once remember my period being very late but it became nirmnal after that also sometime once in several months they can come a little late.That's it.

      Other things: I have always been very hairy more than normal.

      For the past 4-5 months I am under considerable stress study related.

      I do have gained weight and experiencing hairfall but there are present many reasons that these could be attributed to.Please give insights.Should I see gynec?