Absence Of Menstruation

While women may not enjoy having their periods, when they fail to arrive, it's worrisome. If your period never arrives or arrives and then suddenly stops, you might be wondering if something is very wrong with you, or perhaps you may even begin to wonder if you could be pregnant. There are a variety of reasons why the menstrual period fails to arrive, but being anxious is not going to get you anywhere. What you need to do is bone up on the subject of amenorrhea and the most common causes behind this state of affairs.

Two Types

There are two types of amenorrhea. Primary amenorrhea is the situation in which menstruation has not arrived by the time a young lady turns 16. Secondary amenorrhea is when menstruation begins as it should and then stops way before menopause is supposed to occur, for a period of at least 3 months. Pregnancy is the most common cause of this condition, but not the only one.

Resolving Problems

Amenorrhea is not an illness, but rather a sign of some other process occurring inside your body. That's why it's important to see your doctor if your periods fail or cease to arrive. That's the only way you will be able to run down the cause and resolve the problem and your anxiety, too. Your physician will ask you about symptoms that suggest specific conditions that might cause amenorrhea such as facial, chest, or abdominal hair growth, headache, a milky nipple discharge, or vision problems.

Not quite 1% of girls in the U.S. fail to menstruate by the age of 16. The most common causes of primary amenorrhea include:

*Chromosomal abnormalities—Some adolescent girls experience the early depletion of their egg and follicle stores so that they cannot ovulate or have a menstrual cycle.

*Hypothalamus Dysfunction—One type of amenorrhea is caused by a malfunctioning hypothalamus, a gland that is situated at the base of the brain. This type of amenorrhea is called hypothalamic amenorrhea. Among the duties of the hypothalamus is the regulation of the menses. Hypothalamic amenorrhea can be triggered by too much exercise, too much stress, or eating disorders. In rare cases, there may be a tumor of the hypothalamus.

*Pituitary Gland Conditions—The pituitary gland also plays an important role in regulating the menses. A growth in this region may rob the pituitary gland of its ability to function as it should.

*Absent Reproductive Organs—Sometimes something goes wrong during the development of a fetus so that a baby girl is born missing reproductive organs. Without these organs, the menstrual cycle cannot occur.

*Malformed Vagina—In some cases, the structure of a girl's vagina acts as an obstacle to the normal menstrual blood flow. There may be a membrane present in the vagina, acting as a barrier between the uterus and the vagina.