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General Medical Questions
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Question : I feel little pains in my stomach two weeks before my period. Is this normal?
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The Trusted Source
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Howard LeWine, M.D.

Joan Marie Bengtson, M.D., is assistant professor of obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive biology at Harvard Medical School and a member of the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproduction at Brigham and Women's Hospital.

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September 19, 2013
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Mittelschmerz is the name of a pain some women feel in the middle of their menstrual cycle during the time between two periods. The term is from the German words for middle (“mittel”) and pain (“schmerz”). It affects about one in five women. 

Mittelschmerz pain often is felt on just one side of the pelvis or lower abdomen.  It is usually mild, and lasts from a couple of hours to a day or two. It’s thought to be associated with the release of the egg from one of the ovaries (ovulation).  This happens two weeks before the start of your period. 

The exact cause of the pain is unknown. But it may be caused by the ovary capsule stretching. Or the irritation from the small amount of fluid released by the ovary along with the egg.

Mittelschmerz is not dangerous. And the discomfort is usually mild.  If you need relief, you can try rest, a warm bath and a mild pain reliever such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen. 

If your pelvic pain is more severe, persists, or happens throughout your cycle, you should see your doctor. He or she can make sure there isn’t another cause of your symptoms.

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