Objective: To evaluate the efficacy of laparoscopic resection of the uterosacral ligaments in women with endometriosis and predominantly midline dysmenorrhea.
Design: Randomized controlled trial.
Setting: Two academic departments. One hundred eighty patients undergoing operative laparoscopy as first-line therapy for stage I to IV symptomatic endometriosis.
Intervention(s): Operative laparoscopy including uterosacral ligament resection or conservative surgery alone.
Main outcome measure(s): Proportion of women with recurrence of moderate or severe dysmenorrhea 1 year after surgery.
Result(s): No complications occurred. Among the patients who were evaluable 1 year after operative laparoscopy, 23 of 78 (29%) women who had uterosacral ligament resection and 21 of 78 (27%) women who had conservative surgery only reported recurrent dysmenorrhea. The corresponding numbers of patients at 3 years were 21 of 59 (36%) women and 18 of 57 (32%) women, respectively. Time to recurrence was similar in the two groups. Pain was substantially reduced, and patients in both groups experienced similar and significant improvements in health-related quality of life, psychiatric profile, and sexual satisfaction. Overall, 68 of 90 (75%) patients in the uterosacral ligament resection group and 67 of 90 (74%) patients in the conservative surgery group were satisfied at 1 year.
Conclusion(s): Addition of uterosacral ligament resection to conservative laparoscopic surgery for endometriosis did not reduce the medium- or long-term frequency and severity of recurrence of dysmenorrhea.