What is the role of radical surgery in the treatment of endometriosis?

Updated: May 10, 2021
  • Author: G Willy Davila, MD; Chief Editor: Michel E Rivlin, MD  more...
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Radical surgery involves total hysterectomy with bilateral oophorectomy (TAH-BSO) and cytoreduction of visible endometriosis. Adhesiolysis is performed to restore mobility and normal intrapelvic organ relationships.

Ureteric obstruction may warrant surgical release or excision of a damaged segment. Bowel obstruction may require a resection anastomosis or a wedge resection if the obstruction is confined to the anterior rectosigmoid.

Endometriosis may recur in 15% of women after extirpative surgery, irrespective of whether estrogen-replacement therapy (ERT) is given postoperatively. [109] ERT can be instituted safely immediately after surgery, especially in younger women who face the prospect of accelerated bone loss and vasomotor symptoms. [109, 110] No trials have reported the use of estrogen plus progestin therapy with respect to estrogen therapy alone postoperatively. However, theoretically, the addition of a continuous progestin could decrease the regrowth of endometriosis.

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