Autonomic Nervous System And Menstruation

Autonomic Nervous System And Menstruation

Women who suffer from primary dysmenorrhea usually have an overly sensitive autonomic nervous system during menstruation. Women with abnormalities in the autonomic nervous system experiences intense pain, as the autonomous nervous system has pain receptors in the nerve fibers that go to the pelvic area and the uterus. Research suggests that women who show severe signs of premenstrual syndrome or PMS may end up having permanently depressed autonomic nervous system.

Every woman has different signs of premenstrual syndrome and the pain also occurs with different intensities. For some, premenstrual syndrome may be a monthly recurring minor syndrome but it can be a disturbance to the regular lifestyle, for those suffering with severe symptoms. However, science has not yet offered any universal treatment or a complete explanation for this difference. Some interesting new findings state that PMS can not only decrease the nerve action of the person every month, but can lead to her having a forever lasting depressed nervous system, in cases where symptoms are severe.

The symptoms of PMS are a combination of behavioral, cognitive, emotional and myriad non-specific physical symptoms. These symptoms may occur a few days before the menstruation cycle and is common in women irrespective of all socio-economic levels and cultures. Some of the commonly seen symptoms are depression, mood liability, irritability, experiencing loss of control, impulsivity, anxiety, fatigue, swelling of the breasts, bloating, fluid retention, general aches and reduced concentration.

Some Japanese researchers from the International Buddhist University in Osaka studied under Tamaki Matsumoto if the autonomic nervous system, that plays an important role in maintaining the equilibrium within human body, changes its functioning or activities for the period of the menstrual cycle. The level of hormones and heart rate inconsistency were measured and questionnaires were used to calculate behavioral, physical and emotional symptoms accompanying sixty two menstrual cycles.The parameters that were tested for a month showed slight or no changes because of menstruation. However, women who suffered from PMS showed results reflecting parasympathetic and autonomic nerve activity that reduced considerably in the luteal phase towards the end. Those women with premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) have poorer rates of nerve action during their menstrual cycle.

Findings point out that the happening of premenstrual symptoms is due to a different operation of the autonomic nervous system which occurs in later part of the luteal phase. This phase occurs just before onset on menstruation.  In women suffering from PMDD, results show that sympathovagal activities were altered even when in follicular phase.

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Autonomic Nervous System And Menstruation

Science Daily: Bad PMS May Mean A Depressed Nervous System
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071219202940.htm