Menstrual cramps and pain after anti-covid vaccination

THE ESSENTIAL

  • More than 11,000 women have reported abnormalities in their menstrual cycle after receiving a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.
  • No direct connection is made, but the drug agency is trying to respond to concerns.

They are more than 11,000 women and are waiting for answers, but for the moment there are only hypotheses to explain the major disruptions in their menstrual cycle that have occurred after the anti-Covid vaccination.

reactogenicity

According to the ANSM, which last Thursday took stock and published a series of advice, the reactogenicity (fever, headache, nausea, etc.) caused by the vaccination could, in fact, affect the hormones involved in the menstrual cycle, as during an infection.

And since stress and anxiety are known factors in disrupting the hypothalamic-pituitary-ovarian axis that regulate the smooth running of the menstrual cycle, the expert panel mentions them as well.

The vaccination act and/or the context of a pandemic could possibly explain these disorders, but other factors such as an underlying gynecological disease, pregnancy or contraceptive treatment are also mentioned.

In any case, this question is taken very seriously, assures Christelle Ratignier-Carbonneil, Director General of the Medicines Agency in France (ANSM): “There is a concern for women that needs to be addressed and not left alone in the face of the issues they are feeling“.

Pains

In the networks, the testimonies are eloquent: unusually long bleeding during menstruation or outside of menstruation, or, on the contrary, no menstruation for several months, significant pelvic or abdominal pain, reactivation of symptoms of endometriosis and even “for surgical removal from the uterus because of it abnormal bleeding in quantity and duration …

On social networks, they are added to the approximately 11,000 reports of this type already “officially” recorded by pharmacovigilance centers in France, under the keyword “Where is my cycle?”.

Serious or unexpected

Menstrual cycle disorders (also called menstrual cycle abnormalities) are irregularities in the menstrual cycle that can affect both the frequency and intensity of bleeding: The periods can be irregular, painful (dysmenorrhea), too heavy or too long (menorrhagia), or absent (amenorrhea).

It is also possible for bleeding to occur between two cycles (metrorrhagia).

Women suffering from menstrual disorders after vaccination against Covid-19 are invited to report systematically on a dedicated website, signalement.social-sante.gouv.fr., in order to be able to document and analyze their symptoms.

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