Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

BACKGROUND: To investigate the available data regarding possible associations between phases of the menstrual cycle and suicidal behaviour. METHOD: A systematic search of major relevant databases was performed using appropriate search terms. RESULTS: Forty-four relevant studies were identified in total, 13 pertaining to suicide, two pertaining to both attempted and completed suicide, 23 to suicide attempts, three to suicide attempts in those suffering from the premenstrual syndrome (PMS), three to suicidal ideation and two to repetitive self-harming behaviours. A variety of methodologies were used in these studies and there were notable differences in the conclusions reached. Studies with better methodology suggest that a positive relationship exists between aspects of the menstrual cycle and non-fatal suicidal behaviour. Such behaviour appears to be more common in those phases of the menstrual cycle when oestrogen levels are lowest (the late luteal and follicular phases), and in those suffering from PMS. CONCLUSIONS: There appears to be an association between the menstrual cycle and non-fatal suicidal behaviours. Interaction between oestrogen and the serotonergic system may provide a possible mechanism.

Original publication

DOI

10.1017/S0033291706007392

Type

Journal article

Journal

Psychol Med

Publication Date

07/2006

Volume

36

Pages

901 - 912

Keywords

Estrogens, Female, Humans, Menstrual Cycle, Mood Disorders, Serotonin, Suicide, Suicide, Attempted