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Is it normal to have irregular periods at puberty?

Q: My daughter, 13 years old, attained puberty at the age of 10 years. At the start she had a heavy bleeding lasting for many days so we took her to a doctor who prescribed some hormone tablets for a cycle. But in the 2nd month when the same problem occurred, we were advised by many people not to go for any hormonal treatment so we went to another doctor for a second opinion. She advised us not to go for any hormone tablets and instead gave some general vitamin tablets. From then the periods became regular with a 40 days gap. But this time she has not got her periods since 55 days. I am in a fix whether or not I should go to any expert again? Otherwise she is a normal healthy person but has a tendency to gain weight.

A:In the first year after menses start very often, in as many as 10-15% cases, the periods can be irregular for a year or even more than that due to eggs not forming in the ovary in a regular sequence. The cycles after some time become normal. If the periods are absent/ scanty or come after long intervals with no other health problem, like excessive weight gain, increasing hair development, there is no need for any medicines, or cause for worry. You mention that she had heavy bleeding on some occasions, If that is the case, you can have one ultrasound to look at the reproductive organs, and have a blood test for Heamoglobin and CBC along with platelet test to make sure there is no condition like ITP which is common cause of heavy menses from the start of the periods. Heavy menses for many days always needs evaluation.


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