The association among dysmenorrhea, chronic pain, and conditions classified as central sensitivity syndromes (CSS) is largely unknown. We investigated the co-occurrence of dysmenorrhea with chronic pain and other CSS (e.g., fibromyalgia, migraines); and, whether severity of menstrual symptoms was associated with severity of chronic pain and of somatic symptoms. Women from a mid-sized Canadian university women (N = 248, age = 21.52) completed measures of menstrual pain severity, chronic pain severity, somatic symptoms severity, and the presence of comorbid CSS. Pearson’s correlations assessed the relationship between severity of dysmenorrhea, chronic pain, and somatic symptoms. MANOVA procedures assessed the interaction between dysmenorrhea and chronic pain and χ analyses were used to test the frequency of CSS among women with dysmenorrhea. Higher ratings of menstrual symptom severity were associated with increased chronic pain severity ( =.66, <.001), and somatic symptom severity ( =.66, <.001). Women with dysmenorrhea were not more likely to experience chronic pain, but were more likely to report a CSS, χ (1) = 5.12, <.05. Dysmenorrhea symptoms may extend beyond the menstrual phase and be associated with more severe symptoms among women with comorbid pain and somatic concerns.

References

PubMed