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Antidepressant Eases Severe Form of PMS, Research Shows

September 25, 1997|From Times staff and wire reports

Some women with a severe form of premenstrual syndrome that carries significant emotional effects can be helped by the antidepressant Zoloft, according to a report in the Sept. 24 Journal of the American Medical Assn. About 62% of the women given Zoloft showed "much or very much improvement," compared to 34% of women given a placebo, according to the multicenter team.

Previous research has found that other antidepressants such as Anafranil, Prozac and Paxil are also effective in treating severe menstrual symptoms. Premenstrual complaints are common among women of childbearing age, ranging from breast tenderness and bloating to anxiety and mood swings, but the most severe symptoms afflict only 3% to 5% of menstruating women.

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