Prevalence and Factors Affecting Dysmenorrhea in Female University Students: Effect on General Comfort Level.Pain Manag Nurs. 2015 Aug; 16(4):534-43.PM
The purpose of this study was to investigate the prevalence and the affecting factors of dysmenorrhea and its effects on overall comfort among female university students. This was a cross-sectional study. The research was carried out between October and November 2013 at a university in Ankara. This study was conducted with 200 female students. The data were analyzed using frequencies, means, SD, χ(2) tests, independent t tests and analysis of variance. Data were collected using an interview questionnaire, the visual analog scale (VAS) and the General Comfort Questionnaire. The mean age of students in this study group was 20.85 ± 2.15 years. The prevalence of dysmenorrhea in the students was 84%. The mean severity of pain was 5.78 ± 2.45 on the VAS. The present study found that 45.8% of female students experienced moderate menstrual pain and the most common co-occurring symptoms were irritability (34.6%) and fatigue (21.5%). One-fourth of the students with dysmenorrhea consulted the advice of a physician and the most commonly used methods for pain were analgesics (69%), heat application (56.5%), and rest (71.4%). Family history of dysmenorrhea, education about menstruation, and frequency of menstrual cycle were identified as important factors in the development of dysmenorrhea (p < .05). The mean general comfort score for students with dysmenorrhea (2.57 ± 0.25) was lower than that of students without the condition (2.65 ± 0.23). Also, use of the methods for management of dysmenorrhea was found to increase students' general comfort levels. Therefore, it is important for nurses to educate and advise adolescents and young women about dysmenorrhea.