Examining the association between menstrual symptoms and health-related quality of life among working women in Japan using the EQ-5D

Kyoko Shimamoto, Mana Hirano, Osamu Wada-Hiraike, Rei Goto, Yutaka Osuga

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Menstrual symptoms have been identified as a substantial burden among women of reproductive age, affecting their health status and quality of life globally. A range of menstrual symptoms have been studied as they affect the health-related quality of life (HRQoL), showing variations across specific menstrual symptoms and study settings. A major concern is demonstrated due to menstrual symptoms in women’s professional and social life, and consequently societal and economic loss for women and the society at large. Yet evidence is scarce that estimates the index form HRQoL score related to menstrual symptoms that is needed for health economic evaluations. Methods: This study aims to investigate the association between menstrual symptoms and the HRQoL among working women in Japan in an index form, using a self-reporting questionnaire (n = 6048). The EQ-5D-3L (EuroQoL 5-dimension 3-level) is used that is a widely used tool to measure health outcomes for health economic evaluations globally. Multivariate regression analysis is conducted to assess the association between the HRQoL score and specific nineteen physical and mental conditions related to menstruation (e.g., pain, heavy bleeding, concentration, negative affect). Results: The index form HRQoL score for menstrual symptoms is estimated as 0.682 in the study population (where a score one suggests perfect health). The association of the HRQoL score varies substantially across the menstrual symptoms. Several of the physical conditions and disorders show a substantial negative association with the HRQoL score. Also, most of the mental and psychological issues are significantly and negatively related to the HRQoL score. Conclusions: This study suggests that HRQoL is substantially and negatively affected by menstruation among working women in Japan. Distinct variations of negative influences across menstrual symptoms underscore the multi-dimensional nature of menstruation and consequently the need of collective interventions to address these difficulties. The evidence of HRQoL continues to be an important area for future research on women’s health and health economic evaluations to inform effective and efficient resource allocations for relevant health policies and financing strategies.

Original languageEnglish
Article number325
JournalBMC Women's Health
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Dec


  • EQ-5D
  • EQ-5D-3L
  • Health economic evaluations
  • Health related quality of life (HRQoL)
  • Japan
  • Menstrual symptoms
  • Menstruation
  • Quality of life (QoL)
  • Utility values

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology


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