Post-Menopausal Bleeding

Post-menopausal bleeding (PMB) refers to any vaginal bleeding that occurs 6 or more months after menstruation ceases—in a woman not taking hormone replacement therapy. Although the vast majority of women experiencing post-menopausal bleeding do not have uterine cancer, a small percentage (5%) do—and that’s why it’s an important topic to discuss. Another reasons it’s important to discuss PMB is that we are now witnessing an increase in the incidence of uterine cancer – also known as endometrial cancer. In fact, endometrial cancer is the only one of the gynecologic cancers –the others being cervical and ovarian—that is increasing.

A woman with glasses holding a mug

Most women experience menopause between the ages of 48 and 53. Menopause is often—but not always—accompanied by a variety of symptoms that may include hot flashes, night sweats, mood changes, declining libido and a variety of other subtle changes.

Prior to the menopause women often experience shorter cycles, occasional skipped periods and lighter flow until they’ve experienced their “final” period. However, between 5-10% of women will stop menstruating for 6 months only to experience another episode of bleeding.