Menstrual Cramps Overview
Menstrual cramps are sharp pains in a woman's lower abdomen that occur when her menstrual period begins and may continue for 2-3 days, a few women may have them last longer. Symptoms can range in severity from a mild annoyance to severe pain that interferes with normal activities.
Menstrual cramps are the leading cause of absenteeism in women younger than 30 years of age. Although over half of women who have menstrual periods experience some discomfort, 10% are temporarily disabled by symptoms. The medical term for painful menstruation is dysmenorrhea.
The following circumstances may make a woman more likely to experience menstrual cramps:
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