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Minerva Ginecologica 2010 February;62(1):17-31

Copyright © 2010 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Endometriosis: in search of optimal treatment

Nothnick W. B.

Departments of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Molecular and Integrative Physiology, University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, KS, USA


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Endometriosis is an enigmatic, debilitating disease which affects as many as 15% of all women of reproductive age and is characterized by pelvic pain and infertility. Current treatment regimes used to manage the disease do so by inducing a hypoestrogenic state. While the absence of circulating estrogen levels lead to a regression of the disease, this hypoestrogenism also induces many unpleasant and unwanted side-effects. As such, these and other shortcomings of current drug therapies emphasize their limitations and the necessity for the development of novel endometriosis treatments. In this review, current therapies for medical management of endometriosis are discussed as are their shortcomings. Potential target areas which may be attractive alternatives to current therapies are also reviewed and include aromatase inhibitors, angiogenesis disruptors and anti-tumor necrosis factor-alpha inhibitors.

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