Endometriosis: Fertility Preservation for Patients with Endometriosis Before or After Surgery?

#ThursdayThoughts

As promised, each Thursday, we will now offer you a piece of educational, science, or research related information. The purpose of our #ThursdayThoughts post is to share with you fact-based content that can enlighten and assist you on your fertility journey. Enjoy our post! Helping to Create New Beginnings….

Endometriosis: Fertility Preservation for Patients with Endometriosis Before or After Surgery?

Endometriosis is a disease where the tissue that normally lines the inside of the uterus also grows outside of the uterus. The most commonly affected areas are the ovaries, fallopian tubes, and pelvis.  Symptoms include pain in the lower abdomen, pelvis, and lower back, and heavy, painful menstrual cycles. Infertility is also a common complaint in patients with endometriosis. For more information on endometriosis, please visit our website: https://www.ivfcenterhawaii.com/fertility-diagnoses/endometriosis-and-infertility-in-hawaii/.

One way to treat endometriosis is through surgical excision of the endometriotic lesions. This can include removal of endometriosis from the ovary (endometriomas). Although surgeons are very careful to remove only the endometrioma, any surgery on the ovaries has the potential to impact future fertility and ovarian reserve. A recent study looked at the outcome of fertility preservation in patients with endometriosis who also underwent ovarian surgery (Ana Cobo, PH.D, et al. Fertility and Sterility. Vol 113, 2020 April; No. 4: pages 836-843).  The study compared patients that cryopreserved their eggs prior to and after surgery.  The observational study showed that fertility preservation prior to surgery to remove endometriosis is optimal.  More oocytes (eggs) were retrieved in patients who had not undergone surgery yet.  This was particularly true in patients < 35 years old. It is important to discuss possible fertility preservation/oocyte vitrification (egg freezing) prior to any surgery to remove endometriosis, especially in women <35 years old with ovarian lesions.

For more information regarding treatment options, please schedule an appointment with one of our physicians at the Fertility Institute of Hawaii 808-545-2800, or visit our website at https://www.ivfcenterhawaii.com/.

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