Tags: Health Topics | menstruation | pms | period | menstrual

Scientists Unlock PMS Mystery — and Cure Could Follow

Image: Scientists Unlock PMS Mystery — and Cure Could Follow

(Dreamstime)

By    |   Thursday, 05 Jan 2017 02:54 PM

Scientists have discovered a genetic connection to the pain, sadness, irritability, and anxiety — better known as PMS — that many women feel in the days leading up to their menstrual cycle. And with this evidence, they are confident a cure could soon follow.

Until recently, PMS was treated as a mood disorder, with severe cases treated with antidepression drugs. But researchers from the National Institutes for Health (NIH) discovered something unexpected that they feel explains these symptoms — and it's not fluctuations of chemicals in the brain. They say the change in hormones before a woman's period completely alters how their genes work.

“We found dysregulated expression in a suspect gene complex, which adds to evidence that PMDD is a disorder of cellular response to estrogen and progesterone,” said Dr. Peter Schmidt, of the NIH’s National Institute of Mental Health, Behavioral Endocrinology Branch. Meaning, genes that are supposed to be inactive are active, and genes that are supposed to be active are in fact inactive.

The researchers confirmed the findings after testing hormone levels in the white blood cells of serious PMS sufferers and comparing them to the cells of women who do not suffer complications from PMS.

They found gene expression had gone haywire in women suffering from PMS, compared to those who didn't suffer from PMS. So PMS sufferers experience terrible mood swings that are the direct result of their entire biology being changed.

Progesterone levels fluctuate throughout the menstrual cycle and can create havoc in women. They peak about seven days before menstruation, and can even vary in the course of a single day. Progesterone levels plunge as menstruation begins, leading to lowered sex drive, migraines, hot flashes, and abnormal uterine bleeding, accompanied by pain. Excessive progesterone levels can act as a sedative and women can feel tired, with slower brain responses.

Dr. Schmidt concluded that this breakthrough could open the door for real-world cures: “Learning more about the role of this gene complex holds hope for improved treatment of such prevalent reproductive endocrine-related mood disorders.”

Schmidt and his team reported their findings in the journal Molecular Psychiatry.

© 2017 NewsmaxHealth. All rights reserved.

 
1Like our page
2Share
Health-News
Scientists have discovered a gene-change connection to the pain, sadness, irritability, and anxiety — better known as PMS — that many women feel in the days leading up to their menstrual cycle. And with this evidence, they are confident a cure could soon follow.
menstruation, pms, period, menstrual
350
2017-54-05
Thursday, 05 Jan 2017 02:54 PM
Newsmax Inc.
 

The information presented on this website is not intended as specific medical advice and is not a substitute for professional medical treatment or diagnosis. Read Newsmax Terms and Conditions of Service.

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved