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Brown Period Blood: What Does it Mean?
If you have ever wondered, “Why is my period blood brown?” then you are at the right place. Although sometimes considered abnormal, many women experience brown or dark brown period blood towards the beginning or end of their periods. Others notice brown-tinged spotting mid-cycle. For most, this is considered normal and is not something to worry about. For some, though, brown period blood or brown discharge after periods may indicate an underlying health condition that requires medical attention.
If you experience brown period blood along with other related symptoms, we recommend talking to your doctor to determine the underlying cause.
In rare cases, brown blood accompanied by atypical symptoms may indicate the presence of uterine fibroids, a common type of non-cancerous tumor that can develop in or on the uterus. Fibroids vary in size and number, and can result in a range of painful, uncomfortable, and inconvenient symptoms. When left untreated, they can eventually harm surrounding organs and even impact fertility.
Although some women don’t experience any issues at all, common fibroid symptoms include:
- Menorrhagia (Heavy or prolonged menstruation that lasts longer than 7 days)
- Anemia, which can lead to fatigue
- Pain during intercourse
- Frequent urination
- Constipation and/or bloating
- Pain in your pelvis or lower back
- Increased menstrual cramping
- Stomach swelling
Below, we will discuss some of the potential reasons why your period blood is brown, along with additional symptoms to be on the lookout for.
Think you might have fibroids based on these symptoms? Take our symptom quiz.
Brown Discharge and Cramps
If you notice brown discharge that occurs with cramping, it may be an indication of several conditions. These two symptoms can appear in conjunction with ovulation and be an indication of a miscarriage if you were pregnant. Other conditions include:
- Ectopic pregnancy where the embryo attaches to the outside of the uterus, which often leads to a spontaneous miscarriage when these two signs are noticed
- Pelvic inflammatory disease, which is an infection of reproductive organs is most often seen between periods
- Endometriosis, which occurs when endometrial cells develop outside of the uterus where they are normally found
- Cervicitis, which is an inflammation of the cervix, may develop brown discharge between periods along with cramping
- Uterine fibroids, which are benign growths that develop along the lining of the uterus
If you’re concerned that fibroids may be the cause of your brown period blood and cramps, you can schedule a consultation at USA Fibroid Centers to get your questions answered by one of our leading fibroid specialists.
Why Do Fibroids Cause Brown Discharge?
One of the most common symptoms for women with fibroids is heavy or abnormal bleeding, which is known as menorrhagia. This happens when a fibroid has grown large enough to block blood flow during menstruation. When the blood passes the fibroid, it may be brown because it is older and has oxidized.
As the fibroids grow, they can also irritate the lining of the uterus, which could lead to additional bleeding. The endometrium, which is the lining of the uterus, may increase in size as the fibroids get bigger, which can cause longer and heavier periods.
You may also notice more clots during your period as well when these growths are present.
Many times, brown period discharge from uterine fibroids is accompanied by other symptoms, such as longer and heavier periods and cramps. However, other women never notice any symptoms of fibroids. If you are concerned about brown period discharge or brown blood at any other time in your cycle, you may benefit from treatment. Our fibroid specialists can discuss treatment options which may help stop the bleeding, cramps, and other signs of uterine fibroids.
When to Contact a Doctor About Brown Period Blood
Brown period blood is most often no reason for concern, if it happens near the beginning or end of your period or if you have light periods. Blood turns brown when it has more time to oxidize or be exposed to oxygen.
However, brown period blood that occurs with one or more of the following symptoms could indicate something more serious:
- Periods that last longer than seven days
- Heavy bleeding
- Menstrual cycles shorter than 21 days or longer than 35 days
- Missed periods
- Breakthrough bleeding and spotting
- Bleeding after menopause
- Pain or bleeding during or after sex
- Pelvic pain or pressure
- Painful or frequent urination
- Unusual vaginal discharge
If you’re experiencing brown blood during your period and any of these symptoms, it’s important that you seek care immediately.
These symptoms may be an indication of various health conditions, including uterine fibroids.
Minimally Invasive Fibroid Treatment at USA Fibroid Centers
If you’re wondering whether your brown period blood, heavy bleeding, pelvic pain, and other symptoms may be due to uterine fibroids, we are here to help. USA Fibroid Centers is dedicated to helping women find relief from their symptoms before they get worse. We believe no woman should suffer painful fibroid symptoms without knowing her treatment options. Although many women believe that a hysterectomy, the complete surgical removal of the uterus, is the only available fibroid treatment, and that just isn’t true.
At USA Fibroid Centers, we offer an outpatient, non-surgical fibroid treatment called Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE). UFE can eliminate your symptoms, preserve your uterus, and quickly get you back to normal activities. The procedure takes only 30 to 45 minutes and does not involve a hospital stay or lengthy recovery; in fact, you can go home the very same day. Most women are back to their full daily schedules within one to two weeks.
To learn more about UFE and how it may help relieve your symptoms, schedule a consultation with one of our leading experts.