Got PMS? You Might Have High Blood Pressure In The Future, Says Study

By: Agata Blaszczak Boxe
Published: 11/25/2015 10:14 AM EST on LiveScience

The headaches, fatigue and other symptoms of premenstrual syndrome may be more than just a monthly aggravation — they may also signal greater future health problems for those women suffering from the syndrome: Women who have PMS may have an increased risk of developing high blood pressure in the future, according to a new study.

Researchers found that the women who had PMS at the beginning of the study were 40 percent more likely to develop high blood pressure over the next 20 years, compared to women who experienced few menstrual symptoms. High blood pressure is a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke.

“To my knowledge, this is the first large, long-term study to suggest that PMS may be related to risk of chronic health conditions in later life,” study author Elizabeth Bertone-Johnson, an epidemiologist at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, said in a statement.

In the study, the researchers looked at the relationship between PMS and the risk of high blood pressure in about 1,250 women who developed clinically significant PMS between 1991 and 2005, and nearly 2,500 women with few menstrual symptoms.

The women were between 25 and 42 years old at the beginning of the study and the researchers followed them for six to 20 years. At the start of the study, and every two years afterward, the women were asked whether they had received a diagnosis of high blood pressure from their doctors in the past two years. [Beyond Vegetables and Exercise: 5 Ways to be Heart Healthy]

The researchers found that the link between high blood pressure and PMS was strongest among women who were younger than 40. The women in this age group who had PMS were three times as likely to also —> Read More