Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder



Premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) occurs just prior to menstruation and is characterized by significant:
  • Depression
  • Irritability
  • Tension
PMDD is much more severe and less common than premenstrual syndrome (PMS).


The exact cause is not known.

Risk Factors

Factors that may increase your chance of PMDD include:
  • Hormonal changes
  • Family history of PMDD
  • Extra stress or a traumatic life event
  • Depression or another mental health condition
Microscopic View of Hormone Receptor
molecule and receptor
Menstruation causes many hormonal changes, which may play a role in PMDD.
Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.


PMDD may cause:
  • Extreme sadness
  • Frequent crying
  • Irritability
  • Anxiety
  • Unusually strong cravings for certain foods
  • Difficulty concentrating or paying attention
  • Insomnia
  • Panic attacks
  • Mood swings
  • Fatigue or lack of energy
  • Physical symptoms, such as sore breasts, headaches, joint or muscle pain, swelling, or bloating
Symptoms typically begin 10-14 days prior to the start of menstruation.


Your doctor will diagnose PMDD based on your symptoms. You may be asked to keep a record of when your symptoms occur and how severe they are.Your doctor may also order:
  • Blood tests
  • Tests to check hormone levels

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