ASSOCIATION OF MENSTRUAL PATTERNS AND IRREGULARITIES WITH LIFESTYLE FACTORS AMONG YOUNG ADULT FEMALES: A CROSS-SECTIONAL STUDY
Abstract - Menstrual cycle is a physiological phenomenon occurring in every female’s reproductive life. Dysmenorrhea prevalence among young adult females is 25-90%. Medical students have vast academic schedule. This coupled with lack of physical activity may lead to psychological stress, anxiety related eating disturbances. Untreated menstrual abnormalities may result in complications like polycystic ovarian diseases. This study was conducted to understand menstrual pattern and its association with lifestyle factors among young female medical undergraduate students.
Material and Methods: Cross-sectional study conducted from 01.10.2022 to 30.11.2022 among female medical undergraduate students in age-group of 18-25 years, studying at a tertiary care teaching hospital in Chitradurga, Karnataka. Socio-demographic profile, menstrual history, menstrual patterns, Impact of menstrual cycle patterns on physical and psychological health were noted in semi-structured questionnaire.
Results: Total of 150 female students participated in study. Dysmenorrhea, Oligomenorrhea, polymenorrhea, irregular menstrual cycles and >6 days duration of menstrual bleeding were present among 82%, 9%, 5%, 16% and 20% participants. 16% were overweight/obese. Dysmenorrhea was present in 92%, 82% and 66% of participants who consumed junk foods on daily basis, 3-4times/week and <1 time/week respectively. Dysmenorrhea was present in 75%, 89% and 53% of participants who ate outside foods on daily basis, 3-4times/week and <1 time/week respectively. These associations were found to be statistically significant.
Conclusion: Dysmenorrhea prevalence was 82%, and significantly associated with unhealthy eating habits such as high frequency of eating junk foods and eating outside. Young adults who have sedentary lifestyle coupled with increased academic stress, may lead to eating disorders that may increase metabolic syndrome risk. Early diagnosis and management of dysmenorrhea should be done and appropriate necessary life style modification should be encouraged among young females to reduce the incidence of PCOS and metabolic syndrome later in life.
Keywords - Dysmenorrhea, PCOS, Metabolic Syndrome, Body Mass Index.