Endometrial Ablation (burning off of endometriosis tissue)

What is Endometrial Ablation for the management of endometriosis or ovarian cysts?

For a patient with endometriosis, and especially when ovarian cysts related to endometriosis are found (an endometrioma), managing endometriosis and ovarian cysts is effective for both reducing pain and for increasing fertility.  In patients with documented infertility, ablation of the endometriosis implants and removal of the ovarian cysts is the most effective way to restore fertility.

Conventional surgical treatment of ovarian cysts (endometriomas) involves access to the ovaries through an abdominal incision, or via laparoscopy, for drainage of the cyst contents and removal of the cyst membrane or wall.  The procedure has some disadvantages, but generally produces excellent results.  Normal ovarian tissue is unintentionally removed along with the cyst membrane or wall, which may reduce the amount of obtainable oocytes for succeeding fertility treatment.  Other complications may be experienced as a large percentage of these patients have an advanced-stage disease, or may have had multiple previous surgeries with resultant scar tissue.  In the occurrence of pelvic adhesions (scar tissue), visualization of the anatomic structures may be insufficient, and ablation of all implants may not be realized.

After endometrial ablation, patients may try to conceive through natural conception with timed intercourse (during ovulation) or by intrauterine insemination. Patients who have undergone a tubal ligation reversal may have been found to have endometriosis implants inadvertently during the tubal reversal surgery. Dr. Morice will remove any endometriomas found during the course of the tubal reversal surgery.  Since the process is linked with a small possibility of adhesion creation, some patients may form adhesions after their tubal reversal, which could lead to scarring down of the tubes and blockage of the tubes even after tubal ligation reversal. A hysterosalpingogram (HSG) is recommended 3 months after tubal ligation reversal surgery for these patients found to have endometriosis or ovarian cysts.

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