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Laparoscopic surgery for endometriosis


Duffy, J.M.N., et al

Subject Keywords: Laparoscopic surgery, Safety, Treatment, Painful symptoms, Subfertility, Endometriosis
Type: Article
Region: International (other)


Endometriosis is the presence in inappropriate sites of tissue that normally lines the uterus. It can cause pain and subfertility. Different treatments for endometriosis are available, one of which is laparoscopic ('key hole') surgery, performed to remove visible areas of endometriosis. Cochrane review authors assessed the evidence on the use of laparoscopic surgery to treat pain and fertility problems in women with endometriosis. Laparoscopic surgical techniques include ablation, which means destruction of a lesion (for example by burning), and excision, which means cutting a lesion out.

Study characteristics

We included 10 randomised controlled trials (involving 973 participants). They were conducted in Australia, Canada, Egypt, Iran and the United Kingdom. Most compared laparoscopic ablation or excision versus diagnostic laparoscopy only. Four of the 10 studies reported their source of funding. The evidence was current to July 2013.

Key results

We found that laparoscopic surgery may be of benefit in treating overall pain and subfertility associated with mild to moderate endometriosis. Laparoscopic excision and ablation were similarly effective in relieving pain, although this result came from a single study. There was insufficient evidence on adverse events to allow any conclusions to be drawn regarding safety



Rights: © The Cochrane Collaboration
Suggested citation:

Duffy, J.M.N., et al. (2014) Laparoscopic surgery for endometriosis [Online]. Available from: [Accessed: 19th August 2018].


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