Cramps after Menopause: Causes, Diagnosis, and Treatment

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Dr. Manu Lakshmi

22 May 2023

What are Post-Menopausal Cramps?

Cramps are a common issue that women face during menstruation. Menstrual cramps (dysmenorrhea) are throbbing or cramping pains in the lower abdomen. They occur before and during menstrual periods.

Mild cramps are common for most women and are not a cause for concern. However severe and painful cramps could be symptoms of a disease or illness.

Menopause is the cessation of a woman’s menstrual cycle. After this, she cannot get pregnant. Therefore, it is unusual to have cramps after menopause, but in some rare cases, it does happen. Post-menopausal cramps are likely a sign of other conditions like:

  • Nausea 
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Bleeding
  • Abdominal swelling
  • Lower back pain
  • Fatigue
  • Swelling or pain in your legs
  • Constipation
  • Unexpected weight loss or gain

Causes of Post-Menopausal Cramps:

Post-menopausal cramps are caused by conditions that normally affect menstruating women but continue after menopause. The following are examples of these illnesses:

  • Uterine fibroids:

Uterine fibroids are small growths that can occur in the wall of the womb or uterus. They are usually benign, which means they are not cancerous. Although uterine fibroids are more prevalent in women who menstruate, it is still possible for those who are post-menopausal to have them.

  • Endometriosis:

It is a condition where the tissue on the womb grows in other parts of the body, such as around the ovaries, fallopian tubes, or bowel. It is most common in those aged between 30 and 40, but symptoms can still occur after menopause.

  • Chronic constipation:

Constipation is a common cause of lower pelvic pressure and pain and gastrointestinal upset. The pressure and pain can result in cramps.

  • Gastroenteritis:

This infection of the digestive tract causes abdominal and pelvic cramps.

  • Ovarian and uterine cancers:

They cause abdominal or pelvic cramping. Post-menopausal women are at higher riskof developing these cancers than younger ones.

The following are the risk factors that increase the probability of post-menopausal cramps:

  • Women who started their periods before the age of 12
  • Those who began menopause after the age of 52
  • If they take estrogen to help control the symptoms of menopause
  • A family history of ovarian or uterine cancers

How Doctors Diagnose and Treat Post-Menopausal Cramps:

It is not normal for a post-menopausal woman to have cramps. You should see a doctor if you have any cramps after menopause. He or she will ask you about your symptoms and medical history and do a physical examination. The examination may be a pelvic exam of your uterus to see if there are any physical problems.

After conducting the pelvic exam, the doctor finds an underlying condition causing abdominal cramps, he or she may perform one or more of the following tests:

  • Transvaginal ultrasound scan: 

A doctor will insert a small device into a person’s vagina to check for any problems.

  • Hysteroscopy: 

A doctor will pass a thin tube with a camera, known as a hysteroscope, through the vagina, and into the womb to collect a tissue sample for testing. This will take place under a local or general anaesthetic.

  • Endometrial biopsy:

 A doctor will insert a thin tube into someone’s womb to collect a tissue sample, which they will examine for signs of abnormal or cancerous cells.

  • Sono hysterography: 

A doctor will pass a saltwater solution into the womb and then perform an ultrasound to check for problems.

  • Dilation and curettage:

 A doctor will open the woman’s cervix and use a thin tool to collect a sample of the womb lining. An examination of the sample allows doctors to check for signs of abnormal growths, such as polyps, endometrial hyperplasia, or cancer.

Treatments for postmenopausal cramps depend on the causes. They are divided into two types- home remedies and hospital treatments. 

These are the remedies and treatments for post-menopausal cramps:

  1. Home remedies
  • Over-the-counter pain relievers, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen
  • Heat pack or hot water bottle
  • Gentle exercise such as walking
  • Maintaining normal bowel movements
  1. Hospital treatments
  • Progestin therapy: 

Progestin is available as oral tablets, an injection, a vaginal cream, or an intrauterine device. Doctors prescribe progestin therapy to treat people with endometrial hyperplasia in which the lining of the uterus grows too thick.

  • Dilation and curettage surgery: 

A doctor can perform dilation and curettage surgery to remove thickened parts of the uterine lining due to endometrial hyperplasia.

  • Hysterectomy: 

This is a surgery that removes part or all of the womb. Hysterectomies are used to treat endometrial or cervical cancer, large fibroids, and endometrial hyperplasia.

Why you should Trust Dr. Manu’s Chennai Gynecologist Clinic for Treatment:

Dr. Manu’s Chennai Gynecologist Clinic is one of the best hospitals in Chennai. Our gynaecology department is renowned for successfully treating and healing women from various diseases and conditions, including post-menopausal cramps. 

If you suffer from the pain of post-menopausal cramps you can come to us. We will start by suggesting home remedies and medicines, and only as a last resort will we suggest surgical procedures such as hysterectomies. At Dr. Manu’s Chennai Gynecologist Clinic you can be sure to get treatment that perfectly suits your needs.

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Disclaimer: The content of this website is for informational purposes only and is not intended for use as diagnosis or treatment of a health problem, and should not be used as a substitute for a visit with a healthcare professional. If you have questions or concerns or you feel that you have symptoms regarding a health or medical condition, you are recommended to contact your physician or get in touch with chennaigynecologist.com for proper treatment.

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