I know that I have read on this board, women saying that their symptoms are worse around menstruation. I have kept a journal for about a year and have seen a definite pattern of worsening symptoms around this time. I have read that the University of North Carolina is doing some studies regarding this. I wish I knew what to do . It seems as though, if I am lucky, I'll have 8 days of no pain and sort of normalcy, but the rest of the time I am trying to recover from the hormonal influence of menstruation. It's pain and bloating and gas and constipation before my period, then loose bowels with pain during, then major constipation afterwards for 4 days or so. By the time it's all over, it's only a week before it starts again. I wish I could have a hysterectomy if it would alleviate the pain and suffering. I feel hopeless, and sad and tired of all this. I am tired of being my own research team. Looking for relief and trying to survive in a world that doesn't stop or slow down for illness. Does any one else have 3 or more kids trying to cope with this?