Q:

Is it normal to spot after your period?

A:

Bleeding after the end of a woman's menstrual cycle is not considered normal and requires medical attention, according to Healthline. Healthy periods range between two and seven days and a woman should not produce blood outside of that duration. Possible causes include a miscarriage, infection, thyroid imbalances, an ectopic pregnancy and uterine fibroids.

Some long-term forms of birth control inserted into the uterus can cause atypical bleeding, notes Healthline. Sexually transmitted diseases may generate internal inflammation that disrupts a woman's normal cycle and creates spotting. Serious causes of non-cyclical bleeding include cancer of the uterus, cervix, vagina or ovaries. Doctors can assess a patient's full range of symptoms and medical history to determine possible causes of unexpected bleeding.

A doctor is also likely to perform a physical examination of a patient's pelvis and may order blood work or perform a biopsy of the cervix for further testing. Ultrasounds can also be performed to examine a woman's reproductive organs for growths or abnormalities. Some women see their vaginal spotting clear up in a matter of time without treatment but are encouraged to avoid taking aspirin, as this can cause additional bleeding. Abnormal bleeding accompanied by dizziness, fever, pain or lethargy constitutes a medical emergency and should be treated immediately, explains Healthline.

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