How does dysmenorrhea affect daily life?

Updated: Sep 23, 2019
  • Author: Karim Anton Calis, PharmD, MPH, FASHP, FCCP; Chief Editor: Michel E Rivlin, MD  more...
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Although dysmenorrhea itself is not life-threatening, it can have a profound negative impact on a woman’s day-to-day life. Besides missing work or school, she may be unable to participate in sports or other activities and thus experience additional emotional distress. Some 10% of dysmenorrheal women have severe pain that can be incapacitating. Dysmenorrhea is a public health problem associated with substantial economic loss related to work absences (an estimated 600 million work hours and 2 billion dollars in the United States). [50]

A cross sectional study that included 897 adolescent girls reported that those in the dysmenorrhea group had significantly higher depression, aggression, insomnia, daytime sleepiness and sleep apnea scores compared to the control and the premenstrual syndrome groups. [51]

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