Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Can progesterone treat premenstrual syndrome? Poor research methods leaves important question unanswered

18.10.2006
Progesterone may help some women with premenstrual syndrome (PMS), but flaws in many of the trials that set out to test this therapy mean that we still don’t know.

Five in every one hundred women suffer premenstrual symptoms at some time in their lives that are severe enough to interfere with their lives. One possible cause of the symptoms is the drop in progesterone that comes before menstruation. A suggested treatment, therefore, is to give women extra progesterone. But many health professionals doubt whether this treatment works.

To see if the research evidence can help resolve this, Cochrane Review Authors examined 17 different studies before performing a more detailed analysis of the data from the two trials which met their eligibility criteria. Of these, one trial of ‘better quality’ concluded that progesterone was more effective than placebo.

The main problem with assessing the benefit of progesterone is that 15 of the 17 trials had to be excluded for one or more important reasons. Some did not screen women for psychiatric disorders or persistence of symptoms after their menstrual periods, and others had to be excluded because the diagnosis of PMS was based on less than two cycles of symptom records. Probably because they needed to be run over many months, many trials also had a high drop out rate.

“The Review has revealed more about the difficulties inherent in the study of PMS and consequent deficiencies in method, than about the efficacy of progesterone in treating it,” says Lead Review Author Olive Ford former honorary Research Officer for the National Association for Premenstrual Syndrome.

Knowing whether progesterone is a useful treatment is complicated by the fact that treatments for PMS generally show large placebo effects. The Review Authors describe how some trials involving other therapies have found the placebo to have more effect than the treatment.

The Review points out that any women who do use progesterone need to be told of the mild side effects. These can include changes in menstrual cycle length and a tendency to become drowsy. In addition one woman who had believed herself to be infertile, conceived when taking progesterone, out of a total of about 650 women in all the trials examined.

Polly Young | alfa
Further information:
http://www.thecochranelibrary.com

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Cystic fibrosis alters the structure of mucus in airways
29.06.2017 | University of Iowa Health Care

nachricht Mice provide insight into genetics of autism spectrum disorders
28.06.2017 | University of California - Davis

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Making Waves

Computer scientists use wave packet theory to develop realistic, detailed water wave simulations in real time. Their results will be presented at this year’s SIGGRAPH conference.

Think about the last time you were at a lake, river, or the ocean. Remember the ripples of the water, the waves crashing against the rocks, the wake following...

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Nanostructures taste the rainbow

29.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

New technique unveils 'matrix' inside tissues and tumors

29.06.2017 | Life Sciences

Cystic fibrosis alters the structure of mucus in airways

29.06.2017 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>