Nishmat's Women’s Health and HalachaIn memory of Chaya Mirel bat R' Avraham

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Hormonally induced period

3 October, 2004

Question:

I receive my period by taking special hormones, as I do not ovulate and must undergo in-vitro to become pregnant. Using these hormones, I usually don't bleed, I just get a brownish discharge for a few days and that's it. Do I need to follow the laws of the bedikot exactly the same as if I were to get my period on my own, and if there actually was blood?


Answer:

Any uterine bleeding makes a woman niddah, whether it results from her natural menstrual cycle or from hormonal treatments.

The main way to determine whether the discharge you are experiencing makes you niddah is by its color. Therefore, you should arrange to show the color to a local rabbi for adjudication. If the color renders you niddah, you follow all the laws of niddah, the taharah process, and immersion, just as you would if you had a natural ovulation. If the color of the discharge does not render you niddah, it will have no effect on your status, and you will be permitted to continue your regular marital life.

Even if the color of the discharge is fine one month, you cannot assume that the following month's discharge will not affect your status. Even if the colors are similar, there are fine differences which must be determined by a rabbinic authority.

(In the event that you experience very light intermittent spotting, the laws of ketamim (stains) would apply. However, if the flow is a little heavier, or if it is continuous or accompanied by hargashah, it would not have the leniencies of a stain. Your status would depend only on the color, as explained above.)


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