Light to Heavy Vaginal Bleeding
When reviewing the following guidelines, take into account how heavy your normal menstrual flow is. Abnormal vaginal bleeding varies depending on what is normal for a particular woman.
- Severe vaginal bleeding means that you are soaking 1 or 2 pads or tampons in 1 or 2 hours, unless that is normal for you. For most women, passing clots of blood from the vagina and soaking through their usual pads or tampons every hour for 2 or more hours is not normal and is considered severe. If you are pregnant: You may have a gush of blood or pass a clot, but if the bleeding stops, it is not considered severe.
- Moderate bleeding means that you are soaking more than 1 pad or tampon in 3 hours.
- Mild bleeding means that you are soaking less than 1 pad or tampon in more than 3 hours.
- Minimal vaginal bleeding means "spotting" or a few drops of blood.
Current as of: June 26, 2019
Author: Healthwise Staff
William H. Blahd Jr. MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine
Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine
Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine