​Diagnosing abnormal uterine bleeding

When you first meet with your doctor about your abnormal bleeding, he/she will discuss how often, how long, and how much you have been bleeding. If you have any changes in your uterine bleeding that affect your daily routine, discuss them with your doctor.

Changes to look for include heavy bleeding during your period, bleeding after sex and other symptoms.

Leading-edge diagnostic tools

Diagnosing the cause of abnormal uterine bleeding starts with a complete medical history and may also include a physical exam, a pelvic exam and a Pap smear (a screening for cervical cancer).

Common diagnostic tests to determine cause of uterine bleeding can or may include:

  • Blood tests—check for certain diseases and conditions

  • Endometrial biopsy–collection of a small tissue sample from the lining of your uterus

  • Hysteroscopy–a procedure using a small scope to view the inside of your uterus and cervix

  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)—uses a magnetic field and radio waves to create detailed images

  • Sonohysterography–an ultrasound exam using fluid to fill the uterus and show details of the uterus lining

  • Ultrasound–uses high-frequency sound waves to capture live images from the inside of your body

Next steps

If you have been diagnosed with abnormal uterine bleeding, your doctor will discuss your medical and surgical treatment options.

Think you might have abnormal uterine bleeding? Make an appointment with one of our Women's Health experts.