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Levonorgestrel-releasing intrauterine device (LNG-IUD) for symptomatic endometriosis following surgery.

Author(s): Abou-Setta AM, Al-Inany HG, Farquhar CM

Affiliation(s): The Egyptian IVF-ET Center, Biostatistics & Information Technology, 3, Street 161, Hadayek El Maadi, Cairo, Egypt. abousetta_md@hotmail.com

Publication date & source: 2006-10-18, Cochrane Database Syst Rev., (4):CD005072.

BACKGROUND: Various options exist for treating endometriosis, including ovarian suppression therapy, surgical treatment or a combination of these strategies. Surgical treatment of endometriosis sets out to remove visible areas of endometriosis and restore anatomy by division of adhesions. The aim of medical therapy is to inhibit growth of endometriotic implants by suppression of ovarian steroids and induction of a hypo-estrogenic state. Postoperative treatment with a hormone-releasing intrauterine system, using levonorgestrel (LNG-IUS), has been suggested. OBJECTIVES: To determine if postoperative use of an LNG-IUS in women with endometriosis improves pain symptoms associated with menstruation and reduces recurrence compared with treatment with surgery only, placebo or systemic hormones. SEARCH STRATEGY: The following databases were searched: (1) Cochrane Menstrual Disorders and Subfertility Group Specialised Register of controlled trials; (2) Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL) (The Cochrane Library 2006, Issue 1); (3) MEDLINE (1966 to January 2006) and EMBASE (1980 to January 2006); (4) National Research Register (NRR). (5) The citation lists of relevant publications, review articles, abstracts of scientific meetings and included studies were also searched. SELECTION CRITERIA: Trials were included if they compared women undergoing any type of surgical treatment for endometriosis with uterine preservation then randomized to LNG-IUS insertion within two to three months versus no treatment, placebo (inert IUD) or systemic treatment. Diagnostic laparoscopy alone was excluded. DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS: Two review authors (AM Abou-Setta and HG Al-Inany) independently selected studies for inclusion and extracted data. Statistical analysis was performed in accordance with the statistical guidelines developed by the Cochrane Menstrual Disorders and Subfertility Group. Data extracted from the trials was analyzed on an intention-to-treat basis. For binary data, the overall common odds ratio (OR) (that is, the odds of having clinical symptoms) and the risk difference with 95% confidence interval (CI) were calculated using the Mantel-Haenszel fixed-effect method. MAIN RESULTS: In one small randomized controlled trial (RCT) there was a statistically significant reduction in the recurrence of painful periods in the LNG-IUS group compared with the control group receiving a gonadotrophin-releasing hormone (GnRH) agonist (OR 0.14, 95% CI = 0.02 to 0.75). The proportion of women who were satisfied with their treatment was higher in the LNG-IUS group than in the control group but this difference did not reach statistical difference (OR 3.00, 0.79 to 11.44). AUTHORS' CONCLUSIONS: One small study has shown that postoperative use of the LNG-IUS reduces the recurrence of painful periods in women who have had surgery for endometriosis. There is a need for further well-designed RCTs of this approach.

Page last updated: 2006-11-04

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