I am 19 years old and have always had a pretty bad period. when i was younger about 17 i had to be on birth control to regulate my period. i stayed on that for about 5 months and it did wonders. i am very regular now. It is usually always the same old thing. Light the first few days with minimal cramps then the last 4 are horrible with a lot of blood, clots and cramps. This time around i am experiencing acid reflux along with the other symptoms that are heightened. I have never had this much blood flow and my cramps are almost mind-numbing. I am unaware of why i am having acid reflux or what could have caused it. My boss told me i am having symptoms of a miscarriage but that is just not possible.
Dear An: I would concur with your diagnosis that this is not a miscarriage (especially if you have no risks for pregnancy). You mentioned super heavy flow and cramps along with the acid reflux symptom. There are a couple of possible GUESSES:
1. The acid reflux could be coincidental to the heavy period (ie triggered by a food, Advil/aspirin-type drugs, or severe stress).
2. When there is a very thick lining in the uterus to be shed that can produce a much heavier flow. A thick lining can also produce increased amounts of prostaglandins.
Common menstrual cramps are caused by the release of prostaglandins from the lining of the uterus. Prostaglandins create both the cramps of labor and menstrual cramps by making the uterus contract. There are also receptor sites for prostaglandins in the bowel and central nervous system. Thus prostaglandins can produce not just cramps but also nausea/vomiting, diarrhea, headaches, and other "flu-like" symptoms.
Ways to block prostaglandins can include birth control pills, or anti-prostaglandin drugs (eg ibuprofen, naproxen sodium, ketoprofen, etc.).
Honestly, the only way to know for sure what is causing the reflux is to see a primary care MD. Certainly if your heavy bleeding or reflux persists, escalates, or becomes chronic you should get evaluated.
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
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