The present study extends a previous report of lower plasma ACTH levels in women with premenstrual syndrome (PMS) compared with asymptomatic controls. Plasma levels of estradiol and progesterone were measured daily in 10 women with confirmed PMS and 8 asymptomatic women. Daily symptom reports were maintained during the same menstrual cycle. Both estradiol and progesterone levels were consistently, but not significantly, higher throughout the cycle in PMS subjects compared with controls. From the follicular to the early luteal phase, estradiol levels were significantly higher in a previously defined PMS subgroup 2 with more severe symptoms throughout the cycle compared with both the less severe PMS subgroup 1 and controls. Progesterone levels were significantly and positively correlated with PMS symptoms along the entire menstrual cycle, preceding the symptoms by 5-7 days. These preliminary results provide support for the hypothesis that the presence of progesterone at early luteal phase levels is required for PMS symptoms to occur.
- Menstrual cycle
- Premenstrual syndrome (PMS)
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Endocrine and Autonomic Systems
- Psychiatry and Mental health
- Biological Psychiatry