Date of Award

Summer 1989

Document Type

Dissertation - Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Nordberg, Robert B.

Second Advisor

Bardwell, Rebecca

Third Advisor

McCarthy, Nanette M.


Two groups of 40 menstrual-aged women, gynecologist-diagnosed as having either PMS with anxiety features (PMS-A) or PMS with depressive features (PMS-D), were sampled. Women in the sample groups completed the Social Readjustment Rating Scale (Holmes & Rahe, 1967) at the beginning and at the end of the study. In addition, on gynecologist-chosen midcycle and premenstrual days, the women completed the Daily Hassles Scale (Kanner, Coyne, Schaefer, & Lazarus, 1981), and the State and Trait Anxiety Inventories (Spielberger, Gorsuch & Lushene, 1957). These data were analyzed to test the following null hypotheses: 1. There will be no, differences between the midcycle and premenstrual state and trait anxiety levels for either sample group. 2. There will be no differences between the midcycle and premenstrual minor change-event stress levels for either sample, group. 3. There will be no relationship between symptom-severity levels and either state or trait anxiety levels, major or minor change-event stress levels far either group. The first hypothesis was rejected in this study. State anxiety levels fluctuated across the menstrual cycle, as would be expected. Trait anxiety levels were not as consistent across applications as those reported by Spielberger and Lushene (1957), which they obtained from 109 women retested 20 days after the initial application of the measure. The second hypothesis was accepted. No differences were found in the minor change-event stress levels obtained across the menstrual cycle from members of the study groups. The last hypothesis was tested by generated a multiple regression equation to summarize the relationship between symptom-severity levels and the independent variables. State anxiety was found to be the variable most useful in predicting premenstrual symptom-severity levels for both groups of women. Thus, the null hypothesis was rejected for state anxiety influences and accepted for major and minor change-event stress and trait anxiety influences on premenstrual symptom-severity levels.



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