menopauseResearchers from Dalhousie University, in Halifax, Nova Scotia reviewed the evidence and make recommendations for women experiencing symptoms of premenstrual syndrome (PMS).

First, the details.

  • 62 herbs, vitamins, and minerals were identified for which claims of benefit for PMS were made.
  • Evidence from well-designed studies was found for only 10.
  • Differences among the studies made it impossible to combine data and conduct a meta-analysis.

And, the results.

  • Data support the use of calcium for PMS.
  • Data suggests that chasteberry and vitamin B6 may be effective.
  • Preliminary data support benefit with the following:
    • Ginkgo
    • Magnesium pyrrolidone
    • Saffron
    • St. John wort
    • Soy
    • Vitamin E
  • There’s no evidence of benefit with evening primrose oil or magnesium oxide.

The bottom line?
The authors concluded, “Only calcium had good quality evidence to support its use in PMS.”

11/20/09 20:21 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.