Normal course of menstrual cycle is a main indicator of women’s health. The slightest deviations in it cause concern in women. In this article, you will find out what the secretions with blood mean and (if this is not menstruation) and what measures should be taken. Discharge with blood but no period: main provocateurs of acyclic bleeding.
What secretions are considered normal
Discharge with blood but no period from the genitals accompany women during the whole reproductive period. Constant presence of mucus secretion is a product of the work of sexual glands that perform a protective, lubricating and transportation (with the entry of sperm) function. During menstruation, you may note spotting, explained by the cyclic rejection of the endometrium, which goes out.
Women often observe the presence of bloody intermenstrual secretions. They appear before or several days after menstruation, in the middle of the cycle and after the intercourse. They can have reddish, pink, transparent and white shade (with streaks), be abundant, scarce, ichor or smearing. This phenomenon implies changes in the body and reproductive system (both physiological disorders and pathologies).
If you find such symptoms, you shouldn’t sound the alarm at once. If bloody secretions aren’t accompanied by pain in the lower abdomen, burning, itching and bad smell in the vagina, they have uniform consistency and pass by quickly, this is a norm resulting from certain condition of female body. Any deviation from these characteristics is a problem that requires a visit to the gynecologist.
Main causes of bloody secretion are:
- Hormonal changes and disturbances.
- Use of hormonal contraceptives.
- Other means of contraception.
- Allergic reaction.
- Rough sex.
- Postpartum and postoperative period.
- Cervical erosion.
- Gynecological pathologies and diseases.
Hormonal changes in the body
Hormone system plays a very important role, as this mechanism provides the functioning of all processes in the body. Its coordinated action regulates the menstruation cycle. Therefore, any hormonal imbalance (especially in women), especially affects the reproductive system.
Fluctuations in the level of estrogen and progesterone often become a reason of spotting before menstruation. Usually, this is a brown smear that appears 1–2 days before critical days, which doesn’t cause discomfort and turns into menstruation. This is an effect of progesterone on endometrium, which swells, becomes loose and ready for excretion.
Spotting after menstruation belongs to the normal phenomena if it ends without a time gap. That is, menstruation transforms into the brown smear, which lasts for a few more days. In this way, the rests of clotted blood leave the body.
In many cases, hormonal imbalance affects the menstrual cycle, which leads to the delay of menstruation, brown or dark discharge instead of it, or its total absence. This phenomenon is often observed straight after menarche and can last up to two years, which is explained by the adjustment of hormonal system. Similar cases are characteristic for the beginning of climacteric and up to menopause.
The action of hormonal contraceptives is aimed at changing the concentration of certain female hormones to suppress women’s fertility. In other words, they induce hormonal imbalance to prevent ovulation and conception. The body always reacts to such manipulations, and in most cases, a woman observes bloody or brown discharge in the first three months of treatment with birth control pills.
If such bleeding lasts longer than indicated, you should see a doctor.
Discharge after the insertion of IUD
One of the most widespread contraceptive methods is intrauterine device. This gynecological device is inserted into the uterine cavity to cause its contraction, which accelerates the progression of ovum that doesn’t have time to mature and attach to the walls of uterus.
If you note the untypical blood discharge after the insertion of IUD, which are characterized by intensity, painfulness or unpleasant smell, this means that the contraceptive was installed improperly, or there is a pathological reaction of an organism. In this case, the device should be removed.
Secretion caused by allergic reaction
Bloody nature of discharge may be due to the allergic reaction to medicines used for the treatment of other systems and organs. This effect is often caused by the administration of antibiotics.
In many cases, irritants are lubricants, means of intimate hygiene with dyes and fragrances, condoms, synthetic underwear and panty liners and tampons from inappropriate material. Such discharge is short and ceases after the removal of irritant.
Blood during ovulation and pregnancy
Discharge with blood but no period in the middle of the cycle is a pretty rare phenomenon among the women of reproductive age, which means the beginning of ovulation. At that moment, mature egg leaves the follicle, which releases a small amount of blood upon the rupture and damage of small blood vessels and capillaries.
Emergence of red and brown discharge means completed ovulation and period of the highest women’s fertility. This sign must not appear every month. It can be present on the first day of completed conception. Ovum is being introduced into the endometrium, which, as a consequence, releases a small amount of blood. It happens approximately a week after ovulation.
In the first month of pregnancy, bloody mucus can appear on the day when menstruation was supposed to start. This is a dangerous sign that may indicate miscarriage, as fetus has not yet settled in. Therefore, in this period, it is especially important to avoid excessive loads. At other stages of pregnancy, bloody discharge is unacceptable.
Follow a link to read about the main features of discharge after miscarriage.
Discharge as a result of sexual intercourse
Vaginal dryness, rough or too active sex can also cause minor bleeding (as well as microcracks in the vagina). This is a short-term phenomenon, but it should be controlled. If such situation is often repeated and accompanied by discomfort, you should visit a doctor.
Postpartum and postoperative period
Spotting (but not menstruation) is a natural process of purification of reproductive tract after delivery. Lochia last for a month, gradually transforming from heavy bleeding into the brown smear. A while after delivery, the uterus contracts intensively, acquiring the pervious size, which also affects the nature of discharge.
In the breastfeeding mother, menstruation cycle is fully restored after the end of lactation. Therefore menstruation may be missing or come and go during the entire lactation period.
Such symptom usually results from the surgical interventions in the reproductive system and abortions. Volume and duration of bleedings depend on the type of abortion, term of pregnancy, type of operation and general health of the patient.
Acyclic discharge in case of pathologies and diseases
Appearance of red discharge (but not menstruation), is often related to some gynecological diseases:
- Inflammatory processes — endometritis, adnexitis and colpitis.
- Endometriosis — mainly, the symptom appears a few days before or after menstruation, accompanied by the pain in the lower abdomen and brown discharge with an unpleasant smell.
- Uterine myoma is a serious disease, whose main feature is non-menstrual bleeding.
- Infectious diseases, whose neglected stages are also manifested in bloody smear.
- Polyps and other neoplasms.
Cervical erosion is a common phenomenon among women of child-bearing age. In many cases, erosion is asymptomatic and can be detected during gynecological examination. But sometimes it is manifested in the intermenstrual bleeding.
Such processes don’t always require treatment. However, doctor must keep them under control, as the affected areas are especially vulnerable to the attack of pathogens and inflammation.
An important rule for every woman is attention to her cycle and nature of discharge. If you note such sign as discharge with blood but no period (which is not related to menstruation), visit to a gynecologist should not be delayed. Monitor the signals of your reproductive system and be healthy!