Psychoneuroendocrine correlates of secondary amenorrhea

Rosella E. Nappi, F. Facchinetti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Functional hypothalamic amenorrhea is a common, non-organic and theoretically reversible form of anovulation due to reduced hypothalamic GnRH drive. Numerous studies suggest that this altered hypothalamic homeostasis is caused by a synergism between psychogenic challenge, promoted in part by dysfunctional attitudes, and metabolic compromise induced by undernutrition and overexercise. The recent growing interest in psychiatric comorbidity underlines the importance of reconsidering the boundaries between psychological disorders and somatic conditions. That not with-standing, it is mandatory in gynecological endocrinology to explore the issue of secondary amenorrhea from a psychoneuro-endocrine perspective in order to devise biopsychosocial interventions which address the individual distress. In this brief review we will try to critically discuss the issue providing evidences from personal studies as clues for better understanding the extent of the complex psychoneuroendocrine network controlling menstrual function.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)83-89
Number of pages7
JournalArchives of Women's Mental Health
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2003


  • Amenorrhea
  • Eating disorders
  • Hypothalamus
  • Reproduction
  • Stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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