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Mediating effect of interpersonal relations on negative emotions and dysmenorrhea in female adolescents
  1. Lingli Mou1,
  2. Wei Lei1,
  3. Jing Chen1,
  4. Rong Zhang2,
  5. Kezhi Liu1,2 and
  6. Xuemei Liang1,2
  1. 1Psychiatry Department, Southwest Medical University, Luzhou, China
  2. 2Psychiatry Department, The Affiliated Hospital, Southwest Medical University, Luzhou, China
  1. Correspondence to Xuemei Liang; xuemei_liang{at}


Background Good interpersonal relationships can improve the negative mood and, to a certain extent, may help relieve dysmenorrhea symptoms. However, there has been no study examining the role of interpersonal relationships in dysmenorrhea and how they may interact with negative emotions.

Aims To investigate the connection between negative affect and dysmenorrhea, and the role of interpersonal relationships plays in this relationship.

Methods The Cox Menstrual Symptom Scale (CMSS), short-form of Depression Anxiety Stress Scale, Interpersonal Comprehensive Diagnostic Scale and UCLA (University of California at Los Angeles) Loneliness Scale were applied to 855 adolescent nursing students to collect information on severity and frequency of dysmenorrheal symptoms, negative emotions (including depression, anxiety and stress), interpersonal problems and subjective experience of loneliness among them, and the relationship among these variables was examined.

Results (1) Both the severity and frequency of dysmenorrhea were positively correlated with negative emotions, loneliness experience and interpersonal problems, while negatively correlated with age at menarche. (2) The negative emotions, romantic relationship and menarche age, but not loneliness and interpersonal problems, significantly contributed to both the severity and frequency of dysmenorrhea. (3) Mediation analysis revealed that the effects of loneliness and interpersonal problems on dysmenorrhea were totally mediated by negative emotions.

Conclusions This investigation indicates that the relationship between interpersonal relationships and dysmenorrhea is mediated by negative emotions.

  • dysmenorrhea
  • emotions
  • interpersonal relations
  • adolescent

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  • Contributors LM contributed to imaging analysis, interpretation of results and writing of the manuscript. WL contributed to designed the study and manuscript editing. JC and RZ contributed to subject recruitment and study implementation. KL contributed to data analysis and manuscript writing and editing. XL designed the study and was involved in all aspects of implementation and report writing. All authors contributed to and have approved the final manuscript.

  • Funding This work was funded by the Sichuan Provincial Science and Technology Department (2017JY0324), Joint Project of Southwest Medical University and Sichuan Luzhou (2017LZXNYD-Z02), Natural Science Foundation of China (81701322); Humanity and Social Science Youth Foundation of Ministry of Education of China (17YJC190001, 17YJC190009), the joint project of Southwest Medical University & Affiliated Hospital of Southwest Medical University (2015-QB-003); Sichuan Applied Psychology Research Center Project (CSXL-172012).

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • Ethics approval The study has been approved by the Affiliated Hospital of Southwest Medical University Institutional Review Board in August 2017 (number: R2017068).

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data sharing statement No additional data are available.

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