Format

Send to

Choose Destination
J Pediatr Adolesc Gynecol. 2006 Aug;19(4):285-9.

Self-treatment patterns among adolescent girls with dysmenorrhea.

Author information

1
Columbia University Medical Center, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, New York, New York 10032, USA. ko2032@columbia.edu

Abstract

STUDY OBJECTIVE:

To describe both non-pharmacologic and pharmacologic treatments used by adolescents with dysmenorrhea.

DESIGN:

Cross-sectional study.

SETTING:

Urban academic medical center.

PARTICIPANTS:

Healthy adolescents aged 19 years or younger (n = 76) with moderate to severe primary dysmenorrhea were included; those using hormonal contraception were excluded.

INTERVENTION:

We collected baseline data via interview from adolescent girls at enrollment in a clinical trial of oral contraceptives versus placebo for primary dysmenorrhea. The interview data, collected prior to any intervention, included information on demographics, dysmenorrhea duration and severity, and self-treatment. We used the validated pain subscale of the Moos Menstrual Distress Questionnaire and a 0-10 pain rating scale to estimate pain severity.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE:

Investigator-administered questionnaire.

RESULTS:

Adolescents' mean age was 16.8 years (SD = 2). Similar proportions described themselves as white (26%), black (30%) or Hispanic (28%). Dysmenorrhea was moderate in 42%, severe in 58%, associated with nausea in 55%, and vomiting in 24%. Of those attending school (n = 66), 46% reported missing one or more days monthly due to dysmenorrhea. Nearly all discussed their pain with someone; however, a minority sought formal medical care. All used nonpharmacological remedies such as sleeping and heat application. Nearly all used at least one medication, 31% reported using two, and 15% used three medications (not concurrently). Many participants reported using medication at sub-therapeutic doses for pain.

CONCLUSIONS:

Adolescents with moderate and severe dysmenorrhea reported high morbidity. Girls used numerous non-pharmacologic remedies as well as medications for pain but infrequently accessed formal medical care. Medication dosing was often sub-therapeutic.

PMID:
16873033
DOI:
10.1016/j.jpag.2006.05.004
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center