Although the principal cause of Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is uncertain, PMS has been linked to the influence or effect of one of the female sex hormones, progesterone, on a host of genetic, environmental, and psychological factors. Cyclical endogenous progesterone produced in the luteal phase of the menstrual cycle has been associated with the abnormal regulation of some neurotransmitters especially “serotonin,” in women with PMS. Although, all women with regular menstrual cycles produce progesterone during the luteal phase of the menstrual cycle, women with PMS are suspected to be unusually sensitive to progesterone compared to others. That, rather than the progesterone itself is the centre of many researches done to dentify the cause of PMS.
Since most women feel some premenstrual symptoms in the days leading to menstruation, the severity rather than the number of symptoms, distinguish women with PMS from those without it. Such women must have symptoms severe enough to disrupt their daily activities and functions, specifically only during the luteal phase of the menstrual cycle, so as to other to distinguish it from many other diseases that may present with many of the symptoms seen in PMS.
Because retrospective assessments of its symptoms are often confusing and inaccurate, women suspected of PMS are encouraged to keep a chart of the various symptoms of PMS and tick prospectively the various symptoms they experience as well as their severity. The cyclicity, the severity and the timing of the symptoms in the premenstrual or luteal phase are keys to arriving at the diagnosis of the PMS. Please click on the link below to view our premenstrual chart.
Prior to making a diagnosis, it is important to exclude other disorders that may present similarly to PMS. These include:
2. Thyroid disorder
9. Drug or alcohol abuse
10. Menstrual disorders
11. Psychiatric disorders such as;
13. Bipolar disorder
14. Panic disorder
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1. Rapkin A. J. The role of serotonin in premenstrual syndrome. Clin Obstet Gynecol. 1992 Sep;35(3):629-36.