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CMAJ. 1987 May 15; 136(10): 1027–1032.
PMCID: PMC1492547

Premenstrual mood changes in affective disorders.


Mood changes during the premenstrual phase have been the focus of considerable research in recent years. Although there has been significant progress in the diagnosis and etiology of major affective disorders, the relation between these disorders and menstrual changes remains controversial. There have been contradictory reports and speculations on women's susceptibility to psychiatric disorders during the premenstrual phase. We describe three patients with a history of mood swings associated with menstruation in whom major affective disorders developed, necessitating intensive psychiatric treatment or admission to hospital. Among women who manifest menstrual mood changes, manic-depressive illness may develop only in a subgroup with genetic predisposition. In such cases the possibility of postpartum mania or depression should be kept in mind in follow-up.

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