While most women reported some degree of uterine pain during their periods, very painful periods, also known as dysmenorrheal, are not something that should be ignored and may require some medical attention.
Dysmenorrhea, or extreme painful cramping sensation of the lower abdomen and/or back that comes and goes much like a contraction or a constant generalized pain, affects many women in their teens and their twenties to the degree that they are unable to perform daily routine tasks.
It is generally understood that the hormone prostaglandin is responsible for the uterus contracting during menses so that the higher the degree of the hormone produced, the higher the degree of contraction and consequently pain.
Primary dysmenorrhea can occur in otherwise healthy women, without there being any particular problem relating to the reproductive organs.
Secondary dysmenorrhea refers to excessive menstrual pain that may be caused by a disorder, infection or other illness or a structural abnormality in or outside the uterus.
Causes for very painful periods may range from Endometriosis to Fibroids, or Ovarian cysts or Pelvic inflammatory disease. The underlying cause could be Sexually transmitted diseases or even something as common place as stress and anxiety. A newly inserted Intrauterine Device (IUD) could also be responsible.