Items in AFP with MESH term: Dysmenorrhea

Dysmenorrhea - Article

ABSTRACT: Dysmenorrhea is the leading cause of recurrent short-term school absence in adolescent girls and a common problem in women of reproductive age. Risk factors for dysmenorrhea include nulliparity, heavy menstrual flow, smoking, and depression. Empiric therapy can be initiated based on a typical history of painful menses and a negative physical examination. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are the initial therapy of choice in patients with presumptive primary dysmenorrhea. Oral contraceptives and depo-medroxyprogesterone acetate also may be considered. If pain relief is insufficient, prolonged-cycle oral contraceptives or intravaginal use of oral contraceptive pills can be considered. In women who do not desire hormonal contraception, there is some evidence of benefit with the use of topical heat; the Japanese herbal remedy toki-shakuyaku-san; thiamine, vitamin E, and fish oil supplements; a low-fat vegetarian diet; and acupressure. If dysmenorrhea remains uncontrolled with any of these approaches, pelvic ultrasonography should be performed and referral for laparoscopy should be considered to rule out secondary causes of dysmenorrhea. In patients with severe refractory primary dysmenorrhea, additional safe alternatives for women who want to conceive include transcutaneous electric nerve stimulation, acupuncture, nifedipine, and terbutaline. Otherwise, the use of danazol or leuprolide may be considered and, rarely, hysterectomy. The effectiveness of surgical interruption of the pelvic nerve pathways has not been established.


Primary Dysmenorrhea - Article

ABSTRACT: Primary dysmenorrhea is defined as cramping pain in the lower abdomen occurring just before or during menstruation, in the absence of other diseases such as endometriosis. Prevalence rates are as high as 90 percent. Initial presentation of primary dysmenorrhea typically occurs in adolescence. It is a common cause of absenteeism and reduced quality of life in women. The problem is often underdiagnosed and undertreated. Women with primary dysmenorrhea have increased production of endometrial prostaglandin, resulting in increased uterine tone and stronger, more frequent uterine contractions. A diagnostic evaluation is unnecessary in patients with typical symptoms and no risk factors for secondary causes. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications are the mainstay of treatment, with the addition of oral contraceptive pills when necessary. About 10 percent of affected women do not respond to these measures. It is important to consider secondary causes of dysmenorrhea in women who do not respond to initial treatment. Many alternative treatments (ranging from acupuncture to laparoscopic surgery) have been studied, but the supporting studies are small, with limited long-term follow-up.



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