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Management of heavy menstrual bleeding in adolescents

Sokkary, Nancy; Dietrich, Jennifer E.

Current Opinion in Obstetrics and Gynecology: October 2012 - Volume 24 - Issue 5 - p 275–280
doi: 10.1097/GCO.0b013e3283562bcb

Purpose of review Heavy menstrual bleeding (HMB) is an extremely common problem among adolescents. This article reviews the differential diagnosis and clinical presentation. Additionally, we aim to present the most up-to-date guidelines for evaluation and treatment.

Recent findings Bleeding disorders are now recognized as a common cause for menorrhagia. The recommended laboratory evaluation has evolved in the last few years. Most forms of hormonal contraception, including the levonorgestrel intra-uterine device, are effective and have been studied in adolescents.

Summary HMB is prevalent in the adolescent population and is associated with serious complications. Laboratory analysis to rule out bleeding disorders should be considered. Medical management, the cornerstone of treatment, has been proven to be safe and effective in this population.

Division of Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas, USA

Correspondence to Dr Jennifer E. Dietrich, MD, MSc, 6651 Main Street F-1020, Houston, Tx 77030, USA. Tel: +1 832 826 7352; fax: +1 832 826 9349; e-mail:

© 2012 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.