Pathophysiology and Treatment of Premenstrual Syndrome

  • Robert L. Reid


The premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is a complex psychoneuroendocrine disorder that results in recurrent temporary disruption of the personal and professional lives of a substantial number of women throughout their reproductive years (Reid & Yen, 1981a). PMS is now recognized as an important factor contributing to marital discord, social isolation, and work inefficiency or absenteeism (Bickers & Wood, 1951; Dalton, 1964). Suicidal and psychotic behavior (Dalton, 1959; Endo, Daiguji, Asano, Yamashitu, & Takahashi, 1978; Glass, Heninger, Lansky, & Talan, 1971; Janowski, Gorney, Castelnuovo-Tedesco, & Stone, 1969; Mandell & Mandell, 1967; Tanks, Rach, & Rose, 1968), accidents requiring admission to the hospital (Dalton, 1960; MacKinnon & MacKinnon, 1956), and criminal activities including child battering, theft, and murder (Dalton, 1961, 1966, 1980; d’Orban & Dalton, 1980) are all reported as occurring with increased frequency in the premenstrual week, indicating that the adverse effects of PMS on both the individual and on society in general may be far-ranging. Conflicting theories about the pathophysiology of PMS and a host of alleged but unproven remedies have both confused and frustrated practitioners faced with the reality of treating affected individuals. The dissatisfaction and skepticism that this has generated among physicians has, in general, resulted in a disinterest in PMS which is mirrored by the paucity of information on this subject in most texts on obstetrics and gynecology. In a recent detailed review, this author has examined many of the controversies, both social and scientific, surrounding the topic of PMS (Reid, 1985).


Menstrual Cycle Luteal Phase Premenstrual Syndrome Menstrual Migraine Premenstrual Symptom 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1987

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert L. Reid
    • 1
  1. 1.Division of Reproductive Endocrinology, Department of Obstetrics and GynaecologyQueen’s UniversityKingstonCanada

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