Cramps, in this case, menstrual cramps are painful contractions in the uterus caused by hormone like prostaglandins chemicals just before your periods. They are the main pre-menstrual symptoms, which mark the beginning of menses, usually within a maximum of 3 days. During menstruation, the uterine lining is expelled which causes bleeding. In order for the uterine lining to be expelled, the muscles contract to create space for the ease of movement. This muscle contraction causes pain, known as cramps. When cramping happens, you experience throbbing pain in the lower abdomen, all the way to your lower back and thighs. This pain can be mild or severe. Sometimes, you will experience cramps but no period.
When you experience cramps but no period, then there is a high possibility that you could be pregnant. This is because when pregnancy occurs, the uterine muscles will contract in the same way just before your periods; in order to create more room for the growing egg. This will usually happen right around the time that you are expecting your periods. The changes occurring in your uterus will cause light cramps in the uterus, which is considered normal. You should take a pregnancy test within 7 days of experiencing cramps but no period to confirm whether or not you are pregnant. The pregnancy test should be done in the morning; when the pregnancy hormones are most active.
Sometimes during the early stages of pregnancy, small swellings that develop during ovulation may form in the ovary on the spot where the egg goes through to the uterus. These swellings known as cysts, (luteum cysts) will produce progesterone just before the placenta has formed well enough to produce its own. The appearance of these cysts will cause cramp like discomfort in the lower abdomen. This is another reason why you may experience cramps but no period. See your doctor.
You may experience cramps but no period a number of times and still find that you are not pregnant. Although it is very rare, it is possible to get cramps and still get periods during the early stages of pregnancy. However, this is not the normal 4 or 5 day bleeding. It is just a spotting and not more. It is therefore strongly advisable to see a doctor, preferably a gynecologist as soon as possible if you experience cramps but no periods for days. There are other reasons why you may miss your periods but these reasons may or may not be the main reasons for cramps but no period.
- Stress can interfere with your menstrual cycle, delaying your periods for a few days or weeks
- Certain types of illnesses and medication can interfere with your menstrual cycle
- Diseases like Ovarian cysts, premature ovarian failure or polycystic-ovarian syndrome
- Major life changes e.g. relocation, loss of a loved one
Sometimes you may experience cramps but no period and be sure that you are pregnant and then suddenly, experience heavy bleeding. When this happens, seek medical attention as soon as possible. This could be as a result of a miscarriage, hormonal imbalance etc. Your doctor will be in a better position to analyze your situation and provide you with appropriate advice and treatment procedure