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A Journal on Obstetrics and Gynecology

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Minerva Ginecologica 2016 April;68(2):211-8

language: English

Should we diagnose and treat minimal and mild endometriosis before medically assisted reproduction?

Annie S. LEUNG, Michael H. DAHAN

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, McGill University Health Centre, Royal Victoria Hospital, Montreal, Quebec, Canada


The treatment of minimal or mild endometriosis prior to assisted reproduction (ranging from intrauterine insemination to in vitro fertilization [IVF]) to improve the likelihood of success is controversial. Ovulation suppression is commonly used in endometriosis to decrease pain, however, there is little evidence to suggest improvements in fertility associated with this technique. Moreover, current evidence is sparse and does not support ovarian suppression prior to intrauterine insemination with or without ovulation induction, while there is some evidence favoring ovarian suppression with gonadotropin releasing hormone agonists prior to IVF to improve pregnancy rates. However, the majority of studies were performed in women with moderate to severe endometriosis. There is currently conflicting evidence regarding surgical ablation or removal of endometriomas prior to IVF, and its outcome on pregnancy rates. This review highlights the paucity of data in the management of endometriosis prior to assisted reproductive technologies and suggests that further studies are needed.

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