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

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Heavy staining with PCOS

11 June, 2017


I am so thankful for this site: Thank you so much:

I have PCOS, which aside from taking a big emotional toll on me personally, really adds stress to my marriage. There are so many things that are unclear and it’s hard to ask a rav because I’m not really sure what I’m asking, because many times I don’t know what’s going on myself.

I went to mikvah a little over a week ago after an irregular cycle, and now I’m experiencing some mid–cycle spotting. Of all the confusing symptoms I’ve experienced, this has never been one of them. I noticed a discoloration on a black pantyliner. I knew this didn’t render me nidah so I disregarded it even though I’ve never experienced this before. It started getting a little heavier later on (though not nearly enough to be a period) so I started to get a little worried. I kept my eyes closed when used toilet paper, but I accidently looked inside the toilet and saw a spot of blood. I know that water cannot receive impurity, so it wouldn’t make me nidah, but I’m still feeling so uneasy. I feel like I’m doing something wrong and it’s making me a little anxious. It’s been three days and there’s still spotting. It’s not light spotting either (but again, not heavy enough to be a period, but I have to wear a panty liner so I don’t stain my underwear.)

I really try to keep the laws of family purity the best that I can, but I really don’t want to render myself niddah if I am not. Especially because I just went to mikvah last week.

I’m hoping you can help me out. Looking forward to your timely response.


Based on your description, you were not rendered niddah from the staining you have been experiencing. You should continue taking precautions against becoming niddah from this staining. If despite your precautions, the staining becomes heavy enough to be considered a flow, you would be rendered niddah.

It is normal to feel uneasy when you know you are staining but are using halachic guidelines to avoid becoming niddah . There are not “loopholes” in the system. The laws of stains are a stringent rabbinic decree added on the Torah level of niddah. Our Sages did not want to overburden women with these stringencies so they built in certain leniencies so women would not be niddah all the time from staining. Taking advantage of these leniencies to avoid becoming niddah from staining is perfectly acceptable, and precisely what the Sages had in mind when they included these leniencies.

Please see our article on stains for more details.

if you find your PCOS is taking a toll on your marriage, we would also suggest speaking to your physician about the possibility of using some medication for cycle control. This page about PCOS in our section of the website designed for medical professionals, Jewish Women’s Health, may be helpful in communicating your concerns.

Please feel free to get back to us with any further questions.


This internet service does not preclude, override or replace the psak of any rabbinical authority. It is the responsibility of the questioner to inform us of any previous consultation or ruling. As even slight variation in circumstances may have Halachic consequences, views expressed concerning one case may not be applied to other, seemingly similar cases. All health and health-related information contained within Nishmat's Women's Health & Halacha Web site is intended to be general in nature and should not be used as a substitute for consulting with your health care professional. The advice is intended to offer a basis for individuals to discuss their medical condition with their health care provider but not individual advice. Although every effort is made to ensure that the material within Nishmat's Women's Health & Halacha Web site is accurate and timely, it is provided for the convenience of the Web site user but should not be considered official. Advice for actual medical practice should be obtained from a licensed health care professional.

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