The Menstrual Cycle

Maison Ashley

Definition

Each month, one of the ovaries in a woman releases and egg in a process called ovulation. If the egg is not fetilized, the lining of the uterus will shed through the vagina.

Follicle Stage

In this stage of the menstrual cycle, the follicles in the ovary mature. This happens from day one to day thirteen of the menstrual cycle.

Ovulation Stage

On the 14th day, a matured egg cell is released from the ovary and swept into the fallopian tube by the cilia of the fimbriae.

Luteal Stage

Days fifteen throught twenty-eight, the egg cell is released during the ovulation phase and stays in the fallopian tube for 24 hours. If a sperm cell does not impregnate the egg cell, the egg cell will disentegrate. The hormone that causes the uterus to retain its endometrium gets used up by the end of the menstrual cycle.

Menstruation Stage

If fertilization does not occur and an embryo is not implanted in the uterus, the progesterone reaches a level in the bloodstream that inhibits further LH secretion.

Amenorrhea

Definition: The abnormal absense of menstruation.

Causes: Natural reason like, pregnacy, breast feeding, or menopause, and some contraceptives, and some medications, lifestyle factors, hormonal imbalance, and structural problems.

Symptoms: breast size changes, weight gain or loss, discharge from breast, acne, vaginal dryness, voice changes.

Dysmenorrhea

Definition: Painful menstruation

Causes: This is manily caused by contractions in the uterus which is a muscle.

Symptoms: You will usually have pain in the lower abdomen. Sometimes you can expierience some pressure in the abdomen also.

Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS)

Definition: A group of symptoms that happen when a woman is between ovulation and the menstrual cycle.

Causes: This is a natural occurrence.

Symptoms: Painful breasts, mood swings, increased appitite, fatigue, depression.

Menopause

Definition: A natural decrease in reproductive hormones when a woman reaches her 40s or 50s.

Causes: This happens to every woman at a certain age.

Symptoms: Hot flashes, vaginal dryness, sleep disturbances, anxiety or depression.