I find this article very upsetting--demeaning, as I suffer from PMDD, and I've suffered greatly from it, both physically and mentally. It has affected every area of my life--my career, my relationships and my financial situation, which is now in ruins. In fact, this disorder has negatively affected my life in so many ways that it's just too big and too horrible to even attempt to explain it all here, and I won't even try.
To me, this article represents more of the same old thing--that people out there don't understand. Most doctors even have that attitude, which makes it all the worse for those of us who suffer from this condition, and all the more difficult to get any kind of treatment. But that attitude is going to change soon, because recent scientific evidence proves that this disorder does exist--and they even know why.
Previously, researchers have shown that women with PMDD have an abnormal response to normal hormone levels and, thus, are differentially sensitive to their own hormone changes. But in 2007, scientists discovered that PMDD is caused from common variants in the estrogen receptor alpha gene that are associated with PMDD. What's more, this association is seen only in women with a variant form of another gene, catechol--o-- methyltransferase (COMT), which is involved in regulating the function of the prefrontal cortex, a critical regulator of mood.
This research was detailed in the article "Risk for Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder Is Associated with Genetic Variation in ESR1, the Estrogen Receptor Alpha Gene" by Liang Huo, Richard E. Straub, Peter J. Schmidt, Kai Shi, Radhakrishna Vakkalanka, Daniel R. Weinberger and David R. Rubinow. Drs. Huo, Schmidt, Shi and Rubinow are affiliated with the Behavioral Endocrinology Branch, while Drs. Straub, Vakkalanka and Weinberger are with the Program on Genes, Cognition and Psychosis, of the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland. The article appears in Biological Psychiatry, Volume 62, Issue 8 (October 15, 2007), published by Elsevier.
St. Joseph, MO
Aug 28 2008 - 8:10pm