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Eur J Pediatr. 2019 Sep;178(9):1325-1332. doi: 10.1007/s00431-019-03419-3. Epub 2019 Jul 10.

A longitudinal study of adolescent dysmenorrhoea into adulthood.

Author information

1
Department Paediatric and Adolescent Gynaecology, The Royal Children's Hospital, Parkville, Melbourne, 3052, Australia.
2
The University of Melbourne, Parkville, Melbourne, Australia.
3
Department Paediatric and Adolescent Gynaecology, The Royal Children's Hospital, Parkville, Melbourne, 3052, Australia. sonia.grover@rch.org.au.
4
The University of Melbourne, Parkville, Melbourne, Australia. sonia.grover@rch.org.au.

Abstract

Dysmenorrhoea is the most common gynaecological symptom in adolescents. Secondary dysmenorrhoea is mostly due to endometriosis. There are no known follow-up studies of dysmenorrhoea into adulthood. Cases of endometriosis often have a long history of dysmenorrhea; however, studies to date have been retrospective. This longitudinal cohort study aimed at analysing the long-term outcomes of dysmenorrhoea and associated rate of endometriosis identified in this cohort. Participants of a study of adolescents seen for dysmenorrhoea were followed-up at an average of 10.24 years. Of those contactable (74), 70 (94.6%) were included. As adults, 19 (27.1%) had slight or no pain with menstruation. Increased age of menarche was found to be associated with no menstrual pain in adulthood (OR 2.10, p = 0.034). No adolescent characteristic studied was found to be associated with severe or very severe dysmenorrhoea as an adult. At follow-up, 13 young women (18.6%) had been diagnosed with endometriosis. All cases of endometriosis were mild. The use of the oral contraceptive pill as an adolescent and feeling an improvement in symptoms with treatment as an adolescent were found to be associated with a diagnosis of endometriosis.Conclusion: These findings are important for counselling adolescents regarding this common presentation. What is Known: •Dysmenorrhoea is the most common gynaecological complaint for adolescents What is New: •Dysmenorrhoea from adolescence resolves in 1 in 4 of young women and no adolescent characteristics predict severe or very severe pain with menstruation in adults. •Only 1 in 5 of women were found to have endometriosis (all mild disease), despite a mean of 10 years of preceding dysmenorrhoea.

KEYWORDS:

Adolescents; Dysmenorrhoea; Endometriosis; Gynaecology; Laparoscopy

PMID:
31292729
DOI:
10.1007/s00431-019-03419-3

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