Menstrual Pain

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Basically New
Jul 30, 2010

I've just started my period (forgive the TMI) and it prompted me to post something commonly overlooked by all men and a HUGE number of women: Dysmenorrhea.

This is my experience.

I started bleeding at 8 (don't be shocked--my mom and sister were 9 and 10). It starting getting painful around 10 or 11, and by the time I was in jr. high I was almost done with puberty and in a whole new world of hurt when that time of the month rolled around.

In high school, naturally, no one ever took me seriously when I said I couldn't go to school because of my cramps. I had also been taking OTC's like crazy for it throughout my life, and I maxed out one day in 11th grade when I realized that 5 tylenol extra strength did nothing for me. Tha was when I realized something must have been wrong with me.

I learned to live with my monthly agony, albeit sometimes only barely. During any period I could experience any (and I mean ANY) of the symptoms of pregnancy without ever being pregnant. It was also common for me to pass out (with cramps or without, but usually with), bleed irregularly (usually more than it seemed possible, but sometimes not at all). Sometimes it got so bad that my muscles locked up on me and I literally could not move. Other times I would be fine as long as I stayed still but reverted to all over agony when I moved.

Then I got married. One night I woke up in a puddle of blood bigger than I had experienced before and figured I was starting a particularly bad period. 4 days later, I was vomiting blood, unable to keep down water and paralyzed by pain to a point where it scared me. I had never felt pain so intense or so localized. My then husband called paramedics who had to lift me onto the gurney in the position I was. When I got to the hospital I filled the urine sample cup with blood. I was told then that I had dysmenorrhea. I tested negative for pregnancy, but the doctors said it was a miscarriage. I had no idea I was pregnant, and I suspect it ended just as it happened.

I did some research and I found out the diagnosis was specific to the amount of pain caused by uterine contractions, and not necessarily to the rest of my symptoms. But it did help to reassure me that I wasn't imagining things. Guys and girls alike have told me to my face that I should take mydol and get over it. The only solution I've found is depo. And believe me, depo is the only reason I was able to do my time in the army. Without it I would probably have been issues a failure to adapt chapter. That, or an EPTS (existed prior to service) medical chapter.

Does anyone else have experience with dysmenorrhea? I think all women have had to deal with people insensitive to their feminine issues. But having this problem seems to make it worse. And pregnancy can be difficult, if not impossible, with rebellious cramps.



Well-Known Member
Dec 8, 2010
I didn't start my periods until I was fifteen (yeah I know, odd, right?) but I can empathize with the rest. I have periods that last for over a week, and for about two days of that I am in severe, wrenching pain. I use a heating pad, take way too much OTC medicine, and pretty much whimper until it's over. I was told I have a tilted uterus and that's one of the problems, as well as a cyst. And depo worked awesome for me, also- but I have no health insurance right now so I can't get it.

One thing that helps me is taking Black Cohosh, it's in the vitamin/herbal supplement aisle of a store. I think it's meant to be for ladies going through menopause or something, but it was recommended to me and it has made a real difference. Hope this helps!:happy:

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