I don't want to try to make bleeding sexy, sorry
November 3, 2016 8:11 AM   Subscribe

For the past ~7 years, I have bled/spotted maybe 75% of the time I have sex. As a single person who has sex with new partners occasionally, this sucks. My OBGYN assures me it's not indicative of any sort of problem other than fragile cervical tissue, but short of putting a towel down every time (ugh), is there anything I can do to make this stop?

My OBGYN swabbed my cervix with a q-tip and the q-tip came out bloody, from which she concluded that cervical trauma is causing the bleeding. She said it wasn't a sign of any medical problem and is relatively common. I get tested at least annually for STDs and have never had one.

My OBGYN said that the only option to fix this medically was to do a procedure that would create scar tissue across my cervix so it wouldn't be so fragile, but this would make conception somewhat more difficult. I'll be getting a new OBGYN soonish, but I wanted to know if there's anything I can do to minimize it. I'm now pretty damn good at getting blood out of sheets/towels, and am fine alerting partners, but would really like to just prevent it in the first place if possible.
posted by anonymous to Health & Fitness (14 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite

Assuming you like to have intercourse when you have sex, do different positions make a difference? In my experience, missionary and cowgirl are less likely to hit my cervix.

Wearing a diaphragm or Softcup during sex would probably keep the blood contained. I've used a Softcup during my period and some partners have been thrilled because no blood, others have hated it because they can feel it.
posted by metasarah at 8:45 AM on November 3, 2016 [2 favorites]

Wear a DivaCup. While it has a pointy end (presumably for ease of retrieval), no one I've been with has ever felt it.
posted by Meagan at 9:02 AM on November 3, 2016 [1 favorite]

You should not have sex with a Divacup inserted. They sit very low in the vaginal canal for ease of use, but do not leave a lot of room for penetrative objects.
posted by theraflu at 9:33 AM on November 3, 2016 [12 favorites]

There are vaginal sponges that can be used during sex that soak up blood. YMMV, but I wanted to throw it out there. I've used softcups and sponges - partners can feel both but sponges seem to be preferred.
posted by umwhat at 9:39 AM on November 3, 2016 [3 favorites]

I don't have a cervix so forgive me if this is way off base, but what about a diaphragm or cervical cap? They cover the cervix and are designed to be used during sex. They're not as common these days as they once were, but they still exist.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 10:02 AM on November 3, 2016 [1 favorite]

Red or black sheets!
posted by mskyle at 10:41 AM on November 3, 2016 [3 favorites]

Please get your doctor's thoughts before you do anything in this thread (except maybe the red/black sheets).

Maybe think about this another way, maybe you will bleed, but maybe you can make your blood clot a little faster.

Do you take drugs that thin the blood? Aspirin? This will increase clotting time.

Do you eat omega 3 supplements or eat a lot of fish? This will increase clotting time.

Do you have low vitamin K? This will increase clotting time.
posted by gregr at 10:49 AM on November 3, 2016 [1 favorite]

Even though the instructions say it's not possible and that it's not recommended to try, I'm one of the many people who have had succesful penetrative sex while wearing a reusable menstrual cup. But I think that sponges may be the way to go here. Probably less noticeable and more comfortable in most cases.

PS I've heard from a LOT of cup users that, no matter what it says in the instructions, their cups do not actually sit low in the vaginal canal. For many of us, they sit right around the cervix.

PPS there are menstrual cups that aren't pointy and do not have a stem.
posted by Too-Ticky at 11:58 AM on November 3, 2016 [1 favorite]

I had this and got the tissue cauterized. Still got pregnant easily enough so I don't think having the procedure done by someone experienced is necessarily problematic.

I also had endometriosis. So you might want to get that aspect evaluated.
posted by jbenben at 12:00 PM on November 3, 2016

My OB-GYN cauterized some "everted" cervical tissue with silver nitrate and no more problems. Previous history of laser cone surgery, in case that applies to you.
posted by SinAesthetic at 12:32 PM on November 3, 2016

I'm a midwife (IANYM/TINMA) and if you were my patient, I'd be interested in learning more about you and history. It sounds like your doc diagnosed you with a friable cervix, but it's unclear whether (s)he did much else as a workup. Bleeding with sex can be benign (if frustrating), and you've ruled out STIs, which is good, but I'd also want to know more: Have you ever been pregnant? How much are you bleeding? Does this happen every time you have sex, or just sometimes? Is it painful, do you get cramps? Is your pap smear up to date? Are you using anything for contraception? Has this always happened, or is it a recent change? Does it change with the size of your partner or position? Has anyone checked for polyps on the outside of the cervix, or in the canal? Do you have any cysts on the cervix?

The barrier methods above (diaphragm, sponge, and cervical cap) might be helpful in protecting your cervix, but they are hard to find these days as they've fallen out of favor as birth control methods. You could also try female condoms (but definitely try one on before you have sex-they are kind of funky!)

Before you sign up for any ablation of your cervical tissue (it sounds like you have prominent ectropion), I'd get a second opinion. Feel free to MeMail me if you have other questions. Hope you find a good solution!
posted by stillmoving at 1:20 PM on November 3, 2016 [5 favorites]

Thirding getting it cauterized and it fixed the problem. It shouldn't have any effect on fertility or miscarriage rates.
posted by snoogles at 2:14 PM on November 3, 2016

Turns out the bleeding I have with sex is due to uterine fibroid. Sometimes doctors don't listen to patients who are women.
posted by b33j at 2:49 PM on November 3, 2016 [2 favorites]

I'm going to jump in and say get a second (or third) opinion from a physician. It sounds like you could be dealing with something else that could become a more serious concern in the long run. Take care-
posted by Mistress of the Bunnies at 5:04 PM on November 3, 2016

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