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A Journal on Psychiatry, Psychology and Psychopharmacology

Official Journal of the Italian Society of Social Psychiatry
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Minerva Psichiatrica 2006 December;47(4):255-63

language: Italian

Premenstrual symptoms in psychiatric outpatients: clinical evaluation in a psychiatric department

Giardinelli L., Forconi S., Valgiusti S., Rotella F.

Dipartimento di Scienze Neurologiche e Psichiatriche Clinica Psichiatrica AOU Careggi, Firenze


Aim. The aim of this study is the evaluation of premenstrual symptoms in psychiatric outpatients referring to the clinic for Women Mental Health. We have taken in consideration both the comorbidity between premenstrual syndrome (PMS) and psychiatric disorders and the interpersonal sensitivity as a vulnerability factor for PMS and affective disorders.
Methods. We recruited 53 fertile nonpregnant women at the Womens’ Mental Health Clinic of Azienda Ospedaliera Universitaria Careggi- Firenze, between June 2005 and January 2006, and 53 healthy control subjects. We administered the following assessment instruments: Premenstrual Assessment Form (PAF) to assess the presence of premenstrual symptoms, Behavioral and Symptom Identification Scale (BASIS-32) to estimate the subjective perception of psychiatric symptoms and the Interpersonal Sensitivity Measure (IPSM) to assess interpersonal sensitivity.
Results. We found higher scores in the patients group for PAF (P<0.001), BASIS-32 (P<0.001) and IPSM (P<0.001). In particular, the outpatients showed an higher prevalence of premenstrual disphoric disorder (PMDD) (P<0.001) than control subjects.
Conclusions. We found a strong correlation between psychiatric disorders and PMS/PMDD. Furthermore, high levels of interpersonal sensitivity among the outpatients could represent a factor of vulnerability for premenstrual symptoms and affective disorders.

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