Health Library







Categories > Menstrual Health > Abnormal bleeding

Prepare for your visit

Take an active part in your medical care by preparing for your office visit. In general, the more details you provide about symptoms, the easier it will be for your physician to make a correct diagnosis.

When it comes to abnormal bleeding, jotting down a few notes each time you have an episode may be the most helpful approach. Here are a few questions you should be asking yourself:

  1. How often does the bleeding occur? How long does it last?
  2. Is the bleeding heavy or light, or does it vary from episode to episode?
  3. Does cramping or other pain normally accompany the bleeding?
  4. Pay attention to the rest of your body, too. Have you been bruising easily? Are you bleeding from anywhere else besides the vagina? Are there any other symptoms you’ve noticed lately?

Finally, remind your doctor of the type of contraception you use, if any.

As a rule, it’s a good idea to keep track of your menstrual cycles. Write down the date of onset of each period, how long it lasts and describe the flow. That will make it easier to identify episodes of abnormal bleeding when and if they occur.