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Behav Med. 1989 Winter;15(4):149-59.

Perimenstrual symptoms: relationships with chronic stress and selected lifestyle variables.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale.


Of primary interest in the present study was the assessment of the association between several contextual factors, including chronic stress, exercise, alcohol, nicotine, and caffeine intake, and the self-report of perimenstrual symptoms. Two hundred and eleven women completed questionnaires designed to assess chronic stress, perimenstrual symptoms, and physical health. The results indicated that stress accounted for a significant amount of the variance in perimenstrual symptoms. Stress, however, accounted for a substantially greater amount of variance in scores on a general health measure than in self-reports of perimenstrual symptoms. Of those lifestyle variables assessed, only duration of current level of strenuous exercise was associated with perimenstrual symptoms to a meaningful extent.

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