Posttraumatic stress disorder and trauma characteristics are correlates of premenstrual dysphoric disorder.

VA CT Healthcare System, National Center for PTSD, West Haven, CT 06516, USA.
Archives of Women s Mental Health (Impact Factor: 2.01). 07/2011; 14(5):383-93. DOI: 10.1007/s00737-011-0232-4
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is often comorbid with premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) in women; however, it is unclear whether this relationship is driven by the trauma that may lead to PTSD or if PTSD is uniquely associated with PMDD. In this study, we examine trauma and PTSD as independent correlates of PMDD. Researchers conducted a cross-sectional, secondary data analysis of 3,968 female participants (aged 18-40) of the Collaborative Psychiatric Epidemiology Surveys. Women who had a history of trauma with PTSD (odds ratio, OR = 8.14, 95% confidence interval, CI = 3.56-18.58) or a history of trauma without PTSD (OR = 2.84, 95% CI = 1.26-6.42) were significantly more likely than women with no history of trauma to report PMDD. This graded relationship was also observed in association with premenstrual symptoms. Among trauma survivors, PTSD was independently associated with PMDD, although characteristics of participants' trauma history partially accounted for this association. Our study demonstrated that trauma and PTSD were independently associated with PMDD and premenstrual symptoms. Clinicians should be aware that women who present with premenstrual symptomatology complaints may also have a history of trauma and PTSD that needs to be addressed. This pattern of comorbidity may complicate the treatment of both conditions.

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    ABSTRACT: Premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD), characterized by luteal phase-induced negative affect and loss of impulse control, often results in compromised social interactions. Although amygdala activation is generally linked to negative affect, increased amygdala reactivity to aversive stimuli in the luteal phase has not been consistently reported in PMDD. We tested the hypothesis that amygdala hyper-reactivity in PMDD is symptom specific, rather than generalized, and linked to socially relevant stimuli. Blood oxygenation level dependent signal changes during exposure to negative images with social and non-social content were evaluated in the mid-follicular and late luteal phase of the menstrual cycle. Fourteen women with PMDD and 13 healthy controls participated. When compared with healthy controls, women with PMDD in the luteal phase had enhanced reactivity to social stimuli compared to non-social stimuli in the amygdala and insula, but attenuated reactivity in the anterior cingulate cortex. Functional couplings between emotion processing and controlling areas were significantly different, being positive in women with PMDD and negative in healthy controls. Changes in progesterone levels in women with PMDD correlated positively with altered amygdala reactivity. Socially relevant aversive stimulation elicited enhanced activity in affective processing brain regions that were functionally coupled to compromised activity in cognitive control areas. Because increased reactivity correlated positively with alterations in ovarian steroid levels, data preliminary support the hypothesis that enhanced progesterone sensitivity in PMDD affects corticolimbic processing of social emotions.
    Biology of mood & anxiety disorders. 02/2014; 4(1):3.
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    ABSTRACT: Abstract Background: Previous studies have suggested that violence victimization is prevalent among women with premenstrual syndrome (PMS). However, it is unclear whether early life abuse contributes directly to PMS or whether associations are explained by the high prevalence of PMS risk factors including smoking and obesity among women reporting childhood abuse. Methods: We have assessed the relation of early life abuse and the incidence of moderate-to-severe PMS in a study nested within the prospective Nurses' Health Study 2. Participants were aged 27-44 years and free from PMS at baseline, including 1,018 cases developing PMS over 14 years and 2,277 comparison women experiencing minimal menstrual symptoms. History of early life emotional, physical, and sexual abuse was self-reported in 2001. Results: After adjustment for obesity, smoking, and other factors, emotional abuse was strongly related to PMS (pTrend<0.0001); women reporting the highest level of emotional abuse had 2.6 times the risk of PMS as those reporting no emotional abuse (95% confidence interval, 1.7-3.9). Women reporting severe childhood physical abuse had an odds ratio of 2.1 (95% confidence interval, 1.5-2.9; pTrend<0.001) compared with those reporting no physical abuse. Sexual abuse was less strongly associated with risk. Adjustment for childhood social support minimally affected findings. Conclusions: Findings from this large prospective study suggest that early life emotional and physical abuse increase the risk of PMS in the middle-to-late reproductive years. The persistence of associations after control for potential confounders and mediators supports the hypothesis that early life abuse is importantly related to PMS.
    Journal of Women's Health 08/2014; · 1.90 Impact Factor
  • Psychosomatic Medicine 01/2012; 74(8):810-816. · 4.09 Impact Factor

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