The objective of this study was to investigate the effect of aerobic exercise on premenstrual symptoms, haematological and hormonal parameters in young women. A total of 30 participants aged 16-20 years and complaining of premenstrual syndrome (PMS) were randomly assigned into two groups: a control group received vitamin B6 and Ca supplements once daily and a study group received the same medical treatment and participated in treadmill training three times per week for 3 months. A premenstrual syndrome questionnaire (MSQ), complete blood picture and hormone assays were performed for the assessment of all participants at the start and after the end of the treatment course. The study group showed a significant decrease in all post-treatment subscale symptoms, scores and total score. Haemoglobin, haematocrit, red cell count and platelet count were significantly increased, while mean corpuscular volume (MCV), mean corpuscular haemoglobin (MCH), mean corpuscular haemoglobin concentration (MCHC) and white blood cell count showed no significant differences. There was also a significant decrease in prolactin, oestradiol and progesterone levels. In conclusion, aerobic exercise increases haemoglobin, haematocrit, red cell count and platelet count, and decreases levels of prolactin, oestradiol and progesterone, resulting in improvement of fatigue, impaired concentration, confusion and most premenstrual symptoms.
Keywords: Aerobic exercise; haematocrit; haemoglobin concentration; premenstrual syndrome; prolactin; steroid hormones.