Behavioral effects of cyclic changes in serotonin during the human menstrual cycle

Med Hypotheses. 1979 Mar;5(3):359-64. doi: 10.1016/0306-9877(79)90017-3.


Many cyclic changes during the menstrual cycle (temperature, depression, motor activity, pain sensitivity, etc.) are closely paralleled by changes in brain serotonin level. These changes, in turn, are associated with peripheral hormone levels which are comparatively regular and easily measured. Their measurement may be useful both in predicting behavior and in accounting for atypical menstrual-related behavior.

MeSH terms

  • Behavior / physiology*
  • Body Temperature
  • Brain / metabolism*
  • Depression / etiology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Menstruation*
  • Monoamine Oxidase / metabolism
  • Motor Activity / physiology
  • Pain / physiopathology
  • Serotonin / metabolism
  • Serotonin / physiology*
  • Sexual Behavior / physiology


  • Serotonin
  • Monoamine Oxidase