Objectives: To determine the length and intensity of monthly bleeding using the characteristics of the pictorial blood loss assessment chart (PBAC) in a cohort of school girls and university students aged under 26 years and to determine the percentage of this cohort with a PBAC score >100.
Design: Evidence obtained from several timed series with or without the intervention. Prospective observational study
Design Classification: Ii-3
Setting: Secondary school and university centre
Patients: 82 secondary school and university students aged 12-25 years.
Interventions: They completed a PBAC prospectively within their last menstruation
Methods: The sample was divided into three age groups (12-16, 17-20, 21-25 years). The link between variables was determined using the 2 test, Pearson’s linear correlation coefficient, binary or multinomial logistic regression, the Mann-Whitney U test and the Kruskal-Wallis H test (significance level 5%).
Measurements and main results: Overall, an average of 19.72% menstrual hygiene products (MHP) were discarded per menstruation (95% CI: 17.18-22.26). The sanitary pads and tampons discarded were of low or medium capacity. The average of PBAC score was 171.01 (95% CI: 142.39-199.64) and 68% of the sample had a PBAC score >100.
Conclusions: The PBAC score did not show any relation to age or length of cycle, although it was linked to the number of bleeding days. The PBAC could facilitate identification of women at risk from menstrual bleeding disorders and enable appropriate measures to be taken in primary care womens’ health clinics.