Classification and external resources
ICD-10 N91.5
ICD-9 626.1
DiseasesDB 14843

Oligomenorrhea (or oligomenorrhoea) is infrequent (or, in occasional usage, very light) menstruation.[1] More strictly, it is menstrual periods occurring at intervals of greater than 35 days, with only four to nine periods in a year.[1] Also, menstrual periods should have been regularly established previously before the development of infrequent flow.[1] The duration of such events may vary.[2]



Oligomenorrhea can be a result of prolactinomas (adenomas of the anterior pituitary). It may also be caused by thyrotoxicosis, hormonal changes in perimenopause, Prader-Willi Syndrome, and Graves disease. "Endurance exercises such as running or swimming can affect the reproductive physiology of women athletes. Female runners,[3][4] swimmers[5] and ballet dancers[6] menstruate infrequently in comparison to nonatheletic women of comparable age[7] or not at all (amenorrhea). The degree of menstrual abnormality is directly proportional to the intensity of the exercise. For example, Malina et al., (1978)[8] have shown menstrual irregularity is more common, and more severe among tennis players than among golfers" (modified by a student paper written by A. Lord)[9] Breastfeeding has also been linked to irregularity of menstrual cycles due to hormones which delay ovulation.

Women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) are also likely to suffer from oligomenorrhea. PCOS is a condition in which the ovaries become filled with small cysts. Women with PCOS show menstrual irregularities that range from oligomenorrhea and amenorrhea on the one hand to very heavy, irregular periods on the other. The condition affects about 6% of premenopausal women and is related to excess androgen production.

Eating disorders can also result in oligomenorrhea. Although menstrual disorders are most strongly associated with Anorexia nervosa, Bulimia nervosa may also result in oligomenorrhea or amenorrhea. There is some controversy regarding the exact mechanism for the menstrual dysregulation, since amenorrhea may sometimes precede substantial weight loss in some anorexics; thus some researchers hypothesize that some as-yet unrecognized neuroendocrine phenomenon may be involved, and the menstrual irregularities may be related to the biological undergirding of the disorders, rather than a result of nutritional deficiencies.[10]

See also


  1. ^ a b c thefreedictionary.com > oligomenorrhea This dictionary, in turn, is citing: Gale Encyclopedia of Medicine. 2008
  2. ^ Berek JS, Adashi EY, Hillard PA. Novak's Gynecology, 12 th Ed.. Williams & Wilkins, Baltimore (1996), ISBN 0-683-00593-6. 
  3. ^ Dale E, Gerlach DH, Wilhite AL (1979). "Menstrual dysfunction in distance runners". Obstet Gynecol 54 (1): 47–53. doi:10.1097/00006250-197907000-00013. PMID 313033. 
  4. ^ Wakat DK, Sweeney KA, Rogol AD (1982). "Reproductive system function in women cross-country runners". Med Sci Sports Exerc 14 (4): 263–9. doi:10.1249/00005768-198204000-00002. PMID 7132642. 
  5. ^ Frisch RE, Gotz-Welbergen AV, McArthur JW et al. (1981). "Delayed menarche and amenorrhea of college athletes in relation to age of onset of training". JAMA 246 (14): 1559–1563. doi:10.1001/jama.246.14.1559. PMID 7277629. 
  6. ^ Warren MP (1980). "The effects of exercise on pubertal progression and reproductive function in girls". J. Clin. Endocrinol. Metab. 51 (5): 1150–1157. doi:10.1210/jcem-51-5-1150. PMID 6775000. 
  7. ^ http://www.duofertility.com/en/my-fertility/medical-info/causes-of-infertility/female-infertility/ovulatory-dysfunction/egg-production/oligomenorrhea.
  8. ^ Malina RM, Spirduso WW, Tate C, Baylor AM (1978). "Age at menarche and selected menstrual characteristics in athletes at different competitive levels and in different sports". Med Sci Sports 10 (3): 218–22. PMID 723515. 
  9. ^ Pechenik, J (2007). A Short Guide To Writing About Biology. Harrisonburg: Pearson Education, Inc..
  10. ^ Tăng Quang Thái (2011). "Khái niệm cơ bản về Kinh thưa". Vì mầm sống tương lai (3): www.drquangthai.wordpress.com. 

External links

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • oligomenorrhea — /ol i goh men euh ree euh/, n. Pathol. 1. abnormally infrequent menstruation. 2. abnormally scanty blood flow in menstruation. Also, oligomenorrhoea. [1880 85; OLIGO + MENORRHEA] * * * ▪ pathology also spelled  oligomenorrhoea         prolonged… …   Universalium

  • oligomenorrhea — noun Infrequent or light menstrual periods in women of child bearing age. Ant: menorrhagia …   Wiktionary

  • Oligomenorrhea — Scant menstruation. Less menstrual blood flow than usual. * * * Scanty menstruation. [oligo + menorrhea] * * * oli·go·men·or·rhea or chiefly Brit oli·go·men·or·rhoea .men ə rē ə n abnormally infrequent or scanty menstrual flow * * *… …   Medical dictionary

  • oligomenorrhea — ol·i·go·menorrhea …   English syllables

  • oligomenorrhea — noun abnormally light or infrequent menstruation • Hypernyms: ↑menstruation, ↑menses, ↑menstruum, ↑catamenia, ↑period, ↑flow * * * “+ noun Etymology: New Latin …   Useful english dictionary

  • infrequent menstruation — oligomenorrhea …   Medical dictionary

  • endocrine system, human — ▪ anatomy Introduction  group of ductless glands (gland) that regulate body processes by secreting chemical substances called hormones (hormone). Hormones act on nearby tissues or are carried in the bloodstream to act on specific target organs… …   Universalium

  • Menstrual disorder — Classification and external resources ICD 10 N91 N95 ICD 9 …   Wikipedia

  • Irregular menstruation — Classification and external resources ICD 10 N92.1, N92.5, N92.6 Irregular menstruation (or irregular cycles/periods) is an abnormal variation in length of menstrual cycles in a woman. Normally, it is actually unusual for a woman to experience… …   Wikipedia

  • Menstruation — Not to be confused with mensuration , a mathematical and a forestry term meaning measurement. See also: Menstrual cycle and Menstruation (mammal) Menstrual cycle Menstruation is the shedding of the uterine lining (endometrium). It occurs on… …   Wikipedia

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