Abnormal Uterine Bleeding (AUB)

What is abnormal uterine bleeding (AUB)?

Many women experience heavy menstrual bleeding at some point in their lives. But for one in four women, every cycle is heavy—and that’s not normal. Doctors call this condition "abnormal uterine bleeding (AUB)" or "menorrhagia."

When is heavy menstrual bleeding too heavy?

Although every woman experiences her period differently, most doctors define a normal, healthy period by a few standard criteria.

Normal bleeding: Abnormal uterine bleeding (AUB):
occurs about every 25-31 days
lasts 4-5 days
totals 2-3 tablespoons
can last longer than 7 days
may require frequent change of protection, or double protection
may include large blood clots in your flow
may cause tiredness, fatigue or shortness of breath (symptoms of anemia)

Is abnormal uterine bleeding limiting your activities?

New guidelines from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists suggest that if heavy periods and irregular menstrual cycles negatively impact your life and you believe they’re a problem, you should talk to your doctor.

In the meantime, resources like our Heavy Bleeding Quiz, Doctor Discussion Guide and summary of Signs and Symptoms give you the tools you need to live a healthier life with heavy periods.