Reasons for Spotting? --- Causes
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May 8, 2017
By Louise Carr, Associate Editor and Featured Columnist

[Health and fitness articles are reviewed by our team of
Doctors and Registered Nurses, Certified fitness trainers and
other members of our Editorial Board.]





Any type of vaginal bleeding is worrying, even when it is just
a few spots. Spotting is very common. Every so often, you
may find your period comes when you’re not expecting it
and you see spots of blood. But while common, spotting
between periods can be frightening – not to mention
annoying. Should you be worried? What could cause
spotting, and what can you do about it?

What Is Spotting?

Spotting is a form of abnormal vaginal bleeding. It is defined
as abnormal because it occurs outside of the regular cycle of
menstruation. Menstruation, which is normally referred to as
your period, usually happens every 21 to 35 days depending
on your cycle.

Spotting is light bleeding outside of your period. You may
notice just a few drops when you go to the toilet, or you
may experience what you would describe as a very light
period.

Spotting and other abnormal vaginal bleeding is common. A
2013 study from Keele University, Staffordshire in the UK
found that 24 percent of menstruating women experienced
intermenstrual bleeding.

What Are the Main Reasons for Spotting?

Spotting may be a sign of something serious but it is more
frequently associated with something less worrying. For
example, many women experience spotting or light bleeding
when they ovulate. This may happen every time you ovulate,
or just sometimes.

Spotting may be the result of a side effect of taking
hormonal birth control. If you are pregnant, you may
experience spotting throughout the pregnancy and
particularly in the early months. This can be normal,
although bleeding can also be a sign of a more serious
complication like miscarriage and it should be checked with a
doctor.

Spotting may be the result of a transition from menstrual
periods to the menopause.

What Are Some Other Reasons for Spotting?

But that’s not all. There are many other reasons you may be
experiencing spotting between periods. Spotting may relate
to an issue with your reproductive system, or could be
caused by medications. Spotting may be caused by a
condition that affects your endocrine system like
hypothyroidism and polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). It
may also be a result of an infection like endometritis,
gonorrhea, or pelvic inflammatory disease (PID).

Does Spotting Mean I’m Pregnant?

Some women may experience spotting when the egg
implants in the uterus, which signals that pregnancy has
occurred. However, it is not clear how common this is, and it
certainly doesn’t mean that all incidences of spotting will
mean pregnancy.

If there are other symptoms of pregnancy including a missed
period then consult a doctor, otherwise it is unlikely that
spotting indicates pregnancy.

Does Spotting Mean Cancer?

It is true that certain cancers can cause spotting, including
cervical cancer, endometrial cancer, and ovarian cancer. But
the American Cancer Society says that women with early
cancers usually have no symptoms, and that symptoms begin
once the cancer is at the invasive stage.

Cervical cancer is not common, and there are around 12,820
women in the United States diagnosed with cervical cancer
each year, according to the American Cancer Society.

We looked at the reasons for spotting based on current
scientific research, to find out what you need to look out for,
and what you can do to remedy the conditions that cause
spotting.

































1.
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome Can Cause Spotting

Between 10 percent and 20 percent of women in the US
suffer from polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), according to
The Office on Women's Health at the United States, a part of
the  Department of Health and Human Services.

PCOS is a chronic endocrine disorder which results in
elevated levels of male hormones and symptoms like obesity,
infertility, hair growth, and spotting between periods. The
supplement inositol may help to treat the symptoms of
polycystic ovary syndrome.

In a 2003 study from the University of Perugia in Italy 136
women with the condition were given inositol while 147 took
placebo. Over 14 weeks the women taking inositol
experienced improvements in the frequency of ovulation and
also in other symptoms of the condition.

2.
Treat Spotting Caused by Hypothyroidism with Selenium

Spotting may be the result of a slow or underactive thyroid,
otherwise known as hypothyroidism. This condition also
causes fatigue, unexplained weight gain, and pain in the
neck as well as problems with your periods.

Hypothyroidism can be treated with medications and also
selenium has showed promise. In a 2010 study from
Papageorgiou General Hospital in Greece, researchers looked
at 339 people with hypothyroidism who took selenium or
placebo.

Those people taking selenium reported fewer of the effects
associated with hypothyroidism, including mood problems
and menstrual problems.

Foods rich in selenium include Brazil nuts, yellowfin tuna,
halibut and sardines.

3.
Uterine Fibroids Can Cause Spotting

A common cause of spotting is the presence of uterine
fibroids. Uterine
fibroids are actually very common and they
are benign tumors that develop on the uterus.

Spotting caused by uterine fibroids may come with other
symptoms like pelvic pain, heavy and painful periods, and
pain during sex.

A 2015 study from Stanford University School of Medicine
shows that women who have high levels of both
testosterone and estrogen in midlife are at a greater risk of
developing uterine fibroids than women with lower levels of
these hormones. The study, which looked at 3,240 women
over a 13 year period, found that three out of four women
will develop uterine fibroids by the age of 50.

Women who had high levels of testosterone were 1.33 times
more likely to develop uterine fibroids, and if women had
high levels of testosterone and estrogen then had an even
greater risk.

4.
Spotting May Be the Result of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease

Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) comes with many
symptoms including abnormal bleeding like spotting.

Pelvic inflammatory disease is the result of infection or
inflammation of the uterus, ovaries, or fallopian tubes. It
was generally believed that there was an increased risk of
pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) after the insertion of an
IUD.

But a 2012 study from the University of California, San
Francisco (UCSF), and Kaiser Permanente Northern
California Division of Research shows that the risk is actually
very low. The study looked at 60,000 women taking part.
One key risk factor for pelvic inflammatory disease is
gonorrhea or chlamydia infection.

5.
Endometritis Causes Spotting

Endometritis is an inflammation of the uterus lining and it
may cause spotting between periods. A common risk factor
for this condition is pelvic inflammatory disease, as are
chlamydia and gonorrhea.

A 2004 study from Washington University, Seattle found that
antibiotics are effective in treating endometritis. The women
in the study took several different kinds of antibiotics for
seven days and at the end of this period these women were
experiencing much less abnormal bleeding, including
spotting.

6.
Could Spotting Be Caused by Unpredictable Cycles?

One of the most common reasons for spotting are irregular
periods, where ovulation time varies between cycles.

Irregular periods could be caused by a hormone imbalance,
a change in the method of contraception, excessive exercise,
or hormonal changes around menopause. Hormonal
solutions can help treat irregular periods, such as hormonal
contraceptives.

7.
Treat Spotting Due to Stress or Exercise with a
Multivitamin

Irregular periods and spotting may be caused by stress or
excessive exercise, although lots of exercise does more
frequently result in the absence of menstrual bleeding.

In the case of spotting or irregular periods caused by stress,
research has shown that multivitamins may actually help. A
2000 study from Nelson R Mandela School of Medicine at the
University of Natal, Durban, South Africa looked at 300 men
and women who either took a multivitamin tablet or a
placebo for 30 days.

Those taking the multivitamin experienced less anxiety and a
better ability to cope with stressful situations. This may help
resolve a problem with spotting and irregular periods.
























































Related:
When Should Your Period Stop? / How to Lose
Weight After Menopause/ Pelvic Cancer-Symptoms and
Treatments /
Osteoporosis- Top 10 Natural Remedies / Best Breakfast to
Fight Arthritis/ Health Dangers of Milk / Lose Weight by
Lowering Thermostat / Lose Belly Fat After the Baby/ Foods
That Shrink Your Waist/ Drinking Cold Water Burns Calories
/
Six Pack Abs-A Guided Tour /Top 10 Foods That Fight
Anemia / How Much Is Too Much Salt? /Sugar-The Disease
Connection / Are Diet Sodas Bad for Your Health? / Ideal
Breakfast for Diabetics / Ideal Breakfast for Arthritis
/
Healing Foods Links /  Foods That Shrink Your Waist /
Foods That Lower Cholesterol/ VLDL-The Other Cholesterol/
Foods That Reduce Blood Pressure

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Foods rich in selenium can reduce
spotting caused by an underactive
thyroid.