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Psychoneuroendocrinology. 1994;19(3):293-304.

The relationship between the menstrual cycle and female sexual interest in women with PMS complaints and volunteers.

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Key Centre for Women's Health in Society, Department of Community Medicine, University of Melbourne, Carlton, Vic., Australia.


This study assesses the influence of menstrual cycle phases and hormones on female sexual interest in both a nonclinical sample of volunteers (n = 18) and women who complained of premenstrual tension (n = 150). Women were assessed prospectively for two menstrual cycles with daily symptom charts. In addition mental status was assessed clinically and the Moos Menstrual Distress Questionnaire completed in the follicular and premenstrual phases. On the basis of these assessments women were assigned to subject groups. During the second cycle, daily 24-h urinary estrogens and urinary pregnanediol were determined. Sexual interest and feelings of well-being were recorded on a daily symptom rating chart. Sexual interest was found to be significantly higher in the follicular and ovulatory phases, than in the luteal, premenstrual, or menstrual phases. Sexual interest and feelings of well-being were correlated (R = 0.29). Sexual interest and feelings of well-being were not correlated with urinary estrogen or pregnanediol levels.

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