Curcumin attenuates severity of premenstrual syndrome symptoms: A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial

Complement Ther Med. 2015 Jun;23(3):318-24. doi: 10.1016/j.ctim.2015.04.001. Epub 2015 Apr 9.


Background: Most women experience premenstrual syndrome (PMS) at their reproductive age. PMS is a combination of psychological, physical and behavioral changes that interfere with familial communication and social activities.

Objectives: Different methods have been suggested for treating PMS and one of them is herbal medicine. This study was done to evaluate the effects of curcumin on severity of PMS symptoms.

Methods: This research was a clinical trial, double-blinded study. After having identified persons suffering from PMS, participants were randomly allocated to placebo (n=35) and curcumin (n=35) groups. Then each participant received two capsules daily for seven days before menstruation and for three days after menstruation for three successive cycles and they recorded severity of the symptoms by daily record questionnaire.

Results: The baseline level of PMS symptoms of before intervention did not differ between groups. While after three consecutive cycles treatment with curcumin, total severity of PMS score had reduced from 102.06±39.64 to 42.47±16.37 (mean change: 59.59; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 46.19-72.99) and in Placebo, total severity of PMS score changed from 106.06±44.12 to 91.60±43.56 (mean change: 14.45; 95% CI: 2.69 to 26.22). Furthermore, difference between mean changes was significant (mean difference: 45.14; 95% CI: 6.10-14.98).

Conclusions: Our results for the first time showed a potential advantageous effect of curcumin in attenuating severity of PMS symptoms, which were probably mediated by modulation of neurotransmitters and anti-inflammatory effects of curcumin.

Keywords: Behavioral symptoms; Curcumin; Mood symptoms; Physical symptoms; Premenstrual syndrome.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Abdominal Pain
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Curcumin / pharmacology
  • Curcumin / therapeutic use*
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Female
  • Headache
  • Humans
  • Irritable Mood / drug effects
  • Phytotherapy*
  • Premenstrual Syndrome / drug therapy*
  • Premenstrual Syndrome / epidemiology
  • Premenstrual Syndrome / physiopathology*
  • Young Adult


  • Curcumin