What increases my risk for amenorrhea?

Because amenorrhea can be caused by a number of conditions, several risk factors must be considered:

  • Undernourishment, eating disorders or low body fat put you at risk for amenorrhea or the absence of menstrual periods and can cause other medical complications.
  • Excessive or over-strenuous exercise can also stress both your hormonal and reproductive systems and lead to amenorrhea.
  • If you take drugs such as contraceptives or antidepressants, you run the risk of menstrual irregularities.
  • If you have had uterine surgery such as dilation and curettage (D&C), a cesarean section or a removal of uterine fibroids, you may develop Asherman's syndrome, in which scarred uterine tissue accumulates in the uterus and can block regular menstruation.

Depending on the cause of amenorrhea, it can be known to occur in members of the same family. For example, if primary amenorrhea was caused by a rare genetic disorder such as Boucher-Neuhäuser syndrome, it can be passed down between generations. Your doctor will probably ask about family history when trying to determine the cause of your amenorrhea, to rule out certain genetic abnormalities or diseases. Some conditions like polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) and primary ovarian insufficiency do tend to run in families and can cause secondary amenorrhea. However, many causes of secondary amenorrhea (pregnancy, low body weight, stress, or even a hormonal imbalance) are circumstantial and are not passed down genetically.

Continue Learning about Amenorrhea

What increases my risk for secondary amenorrhea?
Sigma NursingSigma Nursing
The probability of secondary amenorrhea is increased by weight, stress, overexercising, certain medi...
More Answers
Are there medications to treat secondary amenorrhea?
Sigma NursingSigma Nursing
Treatment options for secondary amenorrhea will vary based on the cause of the absent period. Second...
More Answers
Can I get amenorrhea if I am not sexually active?
Patricia Geraghty, NPPatricia Geraghty, NP
You can get amenorrhea even if not sexually active. Secondary amenorrhea is when, after being regula...
More Answers
How is amenorrhea further classified?
Honor Society of Nursing (STTI)Honor Society of Nursing (STTI)
Amenorrhea can be further classified into ovulatory amenorrhea (when an egg is released) and anovula...
More Answers

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.