Progestin intrauterine device and GnRH analogue for uterus-sparing treatment of endometrial precancers and well-differentiated early endometrial carcinoma in young women

Ann Oncol. 2011 Mar;22(3):643-649. doi: 10.1093/annonc/mdq463. Epub 2010 Sep 28.


Background: To test the efficacy of levonorgestrel-release intrauterine device (LNG-IUD) plus gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) for treating women aged <40 years with atypical endometrial hyperplasia (AEH) or presumed International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics stage IA limited to the endometrium, well differentiated (G1), endometrioid endometrial cancer (EC), who wish to preserve their fertility.

Patients and methods: A prospective observational study was conducted. Treatment consisted on the insertion of an LNG-IUD for 1 year plus GnRH analogue for 6 months.

Results: From January 1996 to June 2009, 20 and 14 patients with AEH and EC, respectively, were studied. Complete response rate was 95% in patients with AEH and 57.1% in women with EC-G1. A progression of the disease was observed in one (5%) and in four patients (28%) with AEH and EC, respectively. Four of 20 patients with AEH and 2 of 14 with EC-G1 experienced recurrences. The average relapse time was 36 months (range: 16-62 months). All of them were alive without evidence of disease at the last follow-up, mean: 29 months (range: 4-102 months). Nine women achieved 11 spontaneous pregnancies.

Conclusions: The combined treatment showed effectiveness in a substantial proportion of patients with AEH and EC. Close follow-up during and after treatment is crucial.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antineoplastic Agents, Hormonal / administration & dosage*
  • Drug Delivery Systems
  • Drug Therapy, Combination
  • Endometrial Hyperplasia / diagnosis
  • Endometrial Hyperplasia / drug therapy*
  • Endometrial Hyperplasia / prevention & control
  • Endometrial Neoplasms / diagnosis
  • Endometrial Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Endometrial Neoplasms / prevention & control
  • Female
  • Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone / administration & dosage*
  • Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone / analogs & derivatives*
  • Humans
  • Infertility / prevention & control
  • Intrauterine Devices, Medicated
  • Levonorgestrel / administration & dosage*
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local
  • Neoplasms, Multiple Primary / diagnosis
  • Neoplasms, Multiple Primary / drug therapy
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / diagnosis
  • Pregnancy
  • Prospective Studies
  • Recurrence
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Young Adult


  • Antineoplastic Agents, Hormonal
  • Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone
  • Levonorgestrel