Changes in premenstrual symptoms in women starting or discontinuing use of oral contraceptives
AbstractIt is not clear whether oral contraceptive (OC) treatment affects premenstrual symptoms in women. The aim of the present study was to evaluate changes in premenstrual symptoms (PMS) in women starting to use or discontinuing the use of OCs. Twenty-four healthy women with no previous diagnosis of premenstrual dysphoric disorder were included in this study with a prospective crossover design. Nineteen women completed daily ratings of somatic and mood symptoms during two hormonally different cycles, during a normal menstrual cycle and while using OCs. The menstrual cycle phases were hormonally verified and the low-dose, monophasic OCs were used in a 21/7 regimen. The onset of OC use significantly decreased premenstrual somatic symptoms, but it did not affect mood symptoms. In the women who discontinued OC use, no significant changes in neither somatic nor mood symptoms appeared in the premenstrual phase.