Influence of SARS-CoV-2 an infection on menstrual cycle

In a current examine revealed within the Journal of Clinical Medicine, researchers systematically reviewed the affect of coronavirus illness 2019 (COVID-19) on the menstrual cycle.

Study: The Effect of COVID-19 on the Menstrual Cycle: A Systematic Review. Image Credit: Peakstock/Shutterstock
Examine: The Effect of COVID-19 on the Menstrual Cycle: A Systematic Review. Picture Credit score: Peakstock/Shutterstock

The COVID-19 pandemic attributable to extreme acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has considerably affected human lives. There was intensive analysis about COVID-19 and its results on respiratory, nervous, and circulatory techniques; nevertheless, its affect on the reproductive system is comparatively much less recognized. Prior analysis noticed a correlation between viral infections and adjustments within the feminine reproductive system.

For instance, one examine revealed that the preliminary part of an infection with hepatitis B (HBV) or C virus (HCV) was characterised by extended, heavy menstruation that progressively turned quick and rare. Though substantial anecdotal experiences exist concerning the results of SARS-CoV-2 an infection on the feminine reproductive system and the adjustments in menstruation, these knowledge are insufficient to attract definitive conclusions.

In regards to the examine

Within the current examine, researchers carried out a scientific overview to research the affect of COVID-19 on the menstrual cycle. Medline, Cochrane library, and Scopus databases have been systematically searched. The phrases ‘menstrual cycle’ and ‘virus illnesses’ have been used to go looking throughout medical topic headings in Medline.

On different databases, the search phrases throughout all fields have been ‘menstrual cycle’ and ‘COVID-19/COVID.’ They thought-about articles revealed throughout 2020–22 and written in English. Two reviewers independently screened titles/abstracts for related research. After the full-text screening, knowledge on the examine traits and outcomes have been extracted. Research have been included in the event that they described not less than one menstrual characteristic amongst individuals with a historical past of COVID-19.

Menstrual cycle options embody the next: menstrual cycle size, size and quantity of menstruation, regularity, irregular bleeding/recognizing between common menstrual durations, and the frequency and signs of premenstrual syndrome. Articles that described the impact of remedy, vaccination, life-style adjustments, or pandemic-related stress have been excluded. Solely analysis research have been included whatever the examine design.


Initially, 444 articles have been recognized, and 424 have been screened on the title/summary stage after eradicating duplicates. After completely different levels of reviewing, three papers have been included within the systematic overview. Two have been cross-sectional research, and one was a cohort examine. One cross-sectional examine examined the consequences of SARS-CoV-2 an infection on adjustments in intercourse hormones and the menstrual cycle in contaminated ladies of child-bearing age.

About 237 grownup ladies aged 18 to 45 who weren’t lactating/pregnant with out menstrual irregularities within the six months earlier than an infection have been included. Ninety sufferers have been extreme COVID-19 circumstances, and the remaining had gentle illness. It noticed that almost 20% of the individuals had a big lower in menstrual quantity with no vital variations between gentle and extreme circumstances.

One-fifth reported extended menstrual cycles relative to their pre-infection menstrual cycle period. Statistically, there have been no vital adjustments in menstrual irregularities between extreme and gentle COVID-19 sufferers. In distinction, menstrual cycle period and menstrual quantity considerably differed between contaminated ladies and controls. This examine advised that menstrual cycle adjustments have been transient.

The opposite cross-sectional examine was carried out in January-March, 2020 in China. It assessed the affiliation between ovarian operate and COVID-19. This examine included 78 ladies aged 50 years or decrease with COVID-19. Members have been requested about menstrual cycle info for the previous three months.

Roughly 22% of circumstances have been severely ailing, 48% reported current psychological dysfunction (despair/anxiousness), 36% underwent gynecological surgical procedure, and 12% had a historical past of benign gynecological illness. Extreme COVID-19 sufferers exhibited larger amenorrhea, irregular durations, menstrual quantity, and ache than non-severe circumstances, albeit the variations have been insignificant.  

The cohort examine was part of an ongoing Arizona CoVHORT examine. Investigators administered surveys on COVID-19 symptomology each six weeks. It included 127 COVID-19 sufferers aged 18-45 who weren’t pregnant on the time of inclusion nor had been not too long ago pregnant. Amongst these, 20 sufferers reported menstrual cycle adjustments. The median quantity period between the constructive check and the final reported menstrual change was 57.5 days.

The widespread adjustments embody irregular menstruation, rare menstruation, and elevated premenstrual syndrome signs. Sufferers with menstrual cycle adjustments have been extra more likely to expertise extra COVID-19 symptoms corresponding to fatigue, shortness of breath, headache, and physique aches/pains. Notably, the researchers couldn’t alter for potential confounders, and the examine didn’t present details about the period of menstrual adjustments.


The current (systematic) overview recognized extended menstrual cycle and decreased menstrual quantity ensuing from COVID-19. It famous that illness severity didn’t considerably have an effect on menstrual cycle adjustments. Nonetheless, the inadequate quantity of knowledge limits the power to attract agency conclusions and highlights the necessity for additional analysis.

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