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Women Health. 1991;17(3):17-32.

Prevalence of perimenstrual symptoms in employed women.

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Department of Family Health Care Nursing, School of Nursing, University of California, San Francisco.


The purpose of this study was to estimate the prevalence of perimenstrual symptoms in professionally employed women. Questionnaires were administered to all female nurses working at least 32 hr/wk in 7 different hospitals on the West Coast between October, 1987 and June, 1988. Of the 760 respondents, 594 were currently menstruating and met inclusion criteria. Symptoms frequently experienced by a majority of women included weight gain/swelling, anxiety/tension/irritability, fatigue, cramps, breast pain, mood swings, and food cravings. Symptoms were more prevalent in women under 30 years. Compared to white women, fewer Asians reported cramps and weight gain/swelling. More single women reported food cravings and depression/crying. Parity, cycle regularity, menses duration, and endometriosis were associated with perimenstrual cramps. Fewer women over 30 yrs experienced skin disorders and depression/crying. The only symptom experienced by more than 60% of women in all age groups was weight gain/swelling.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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