Bleeding after Sex (The Causes)
So ladies, lets’ talk about the causes of vaginal bleeding after sex, also known as post coital bleeding. This symptom can be very alarming and scary and it is one of the major concerns for abnormal vaginal bleeding.
While some may think it is normal to have slight bleeding during or after sex and relate it to the nature of the sexual activity, this is not a symptom to be ignored.
Post coital bleeding can be due to benign causes or it can be a sign of a serious underlying condition. The bleeding can either be from the cervix, womb or vagina itself.
The bleeding can be form:
- the cervix,
- womb or
a) Benign conditions: cervical polyps and ectropion
Benign conditions include cervical polyps and ectropion. Polyps are benign growth that can bleed upon contact during sex. Cervical ectropion is a condition whereby the cells from cervical is migrates and protrudes outwards onto the vaginal portion of cervix, giving it a very characteristic red appearance that can be detected during vaginal examination. However, sometimes it may indistinguishable form early cervical cancer. Therefore further testing must be done.
b) Conditions like Infection and inflammation (Sexually Transmitted Infections)
Infection and inflammation of the cervix ( also known as cervicitis) is another benign condition that can cause bleeding after sex. This is typically caused by sexually transmitted infections such as chlamydia, gonorrhea, herpes simplex and human papilloma virus ( HPV). Unlike in men, most of the time these infections do not present with any symptoms in women. However, if infection is left untreated, then it can lead to complications.
c) Late symptom of cancers
Post coital bleeding is a typical but, often a late symptom of cervical cancer and uterine cancer. Therefore, pap smear plays an important role in screening and early detection of pre-cancerous cells for cervical cancer. Sometimes, uterine biopsy is necessary to rule out cancer especially in older women. Several important factors that can increase risk of cervical and uterine cancer include smoking, obesity, HPV infection, early age of sexual exposure, multiple sexual partners and hormonal replacement therapy ( HRT).
Bleeeding after sex is not a symptom to be ignored. If you are experiencing any abnormal vaginal bleeding, visit your doctor immediately for proper assessment. Early detection can save your life
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