By: 2 December 2016
Does hormonal contraception alleviate premenstrual symptoms?

The results of a new study designed to compare the severity and timing of perimenstrual symptoms among women who do or do not use cyclic hormonal contraception are reported in Journal of Women’s Health.

The researchers report changes in menstrual cycle symptom scores for variables such as depression, anger, irritability, and physical symptoms between cyclic hormonal contraception users and nonusers. They found that cyclic hormonal contraception may attenuate premenstrual symptoms, but that the timing of symptoms is similar regardless of whether the subjects used hormonal contraception. Better understanding the psychological and physical effects of hormonal contraception could help guide clinicians in the diagnosis and treatment of premenstrual syndrome (PMS).

“Because women taking hormonal contraceptives are routinely excluded from studies of PMS and premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD), this study provides a valuable examination of the influence of exogenous hormones on premenstrual symptom expression and response to treatment,” says Robert Downs, MD, Deputy Editor of Journal of Women’s Health, Richmond, VA.

Research reported in this publication was supported by the National Institute on Mental Health. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.

Article: The Influence of Cyclic Hormonal Contraception on Expression of Premenstrual Syndrome, Yonkers Kimberly A., Cameron Brianna, Gueorguieva Ralitza, Altemus Margaret, and Kornstein Susan G, Journal of Women’s Health, doi:10.1089/jwh.2016.5941, published online 17 November 2016.

Source: Medical News Today