Study casts doubt over value of popular PMS treatment

October 04, 2001

Efficacy of progesterone and progestogens in management of premenstrual syndrome: systematic review BMJ Volume 323, pp 776-80

Treatment of premenstrual syndrome with the hormone progesterone or progestogens (a group of drugs similar to progesterone) is unlikely to be effective, despite the continued popularity of these treatments in the United Kingdom and the United States, concludes a study in this week's BMJ.

Researchers at Keele University reviewed 14 trials of progesterone or progestogen therapy, involving over 900 women with premenstrual syndrome. They found no evidence to support the claimed effectiveness of progesterone and suggest that progestogens are also unlikely to be effective in the management of premenstrual syndrome.

This is not surprising, as there are reliable data to refute the theory the premenstrual syndrome is caused by a progesterone deficiency, say the authors. With this review, there is no convincing evidence to support the continued prescription of progesterone or progestogens for the management of premenstrual syndrome, they conclude.


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