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What is the rate of incidence for dysmenorrhea?

Patricia Geraghty, NP
Women's Health

Rates of dysmenorrhea reported in scientific journals vary widely from between 16% to 91% of women with severe pain in 2% to 29% of the women. Women who are younger, who have not had a baby, are not using hormonal contraception such as the pill, patch or ring, or who have a family history where there is dysmenorrhea are more likely to have painful periods.

One in every two women who have their period suffer from dysmenorrhea, or intense pain and cramping during menstruation. Three out of four women with dysmenorrhea have primary dysmenorrhea. One in four women with dysmenorrhea has a secondary form caused by an underlying gynecological condition. It is estimated that five to 15 percent of women with primary dysmenorrhea suffer from pain that hinders their ability to do everyday tasks. 

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.