Retrospective assessment of premenstrual changes in Icelandic women

Herdís Sveinsdóttir, Gudrún Marteinsdóttir

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9 Citations (Scopus)


The purpose of this study was to increase our knowledge of the condition of Icelandic women aged 29 to 40 years during the premenstrual phase of the menstrual cycle. Premenstrual symptoms were measured by a retrospective instrument adapted from Halbreich and colleagues’ Premenstrual Assessment Form. Our findings showed that Icelandic women experience premenstrual changes as do their peers in other countries. The most common symptoms were bloating, mood swings, irritability, abdominal discomfort-pain, and intolerance-impatience. Women who were symptomatic in the week before menses tended to manifest more symptoms at other times as well. In general, women responded to their symptoms by taking some time to relax, take pain medication, or seek support. Women experiencing more severe symptoms were more likely to seek support from a partner, relative, or friend. More than 40% of the sample reported that they perceived the symptoms as having negative effects on their relationships with their partners and children, and those experiencing more severe symptoms were more likely to report these perceptions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)303-315
Number of pages13
JournalHealth Care for Women International
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1991


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