The Surgical Treatments Outcomes Project for Dysfunctional Uterine Bleeding: summary of an Agency for Health Research and Quality-sponsored randomized trial of endometrial ablation versus hysterectomy for women with heavy menstrual bleeding

Menopause. 2011 Apr;18(4):445-52. doi: 10.1097/gme.0b013e31820786f1.


Surgical Treatments Outcomes Project for Dysfunctional Uterine Bleeding is an agency for the Healthcare Research and Quality project built around a multicenter randomized clinical trial comparing hysterectomy and endometrial ablation (EA) for the treatment of heavy menstrual bleeding unrelated to structural causes. For inclusion, women self-defined their complaint, and the endometrial cavity was evaluated to exclude structural lesions. The primary outcomes were bleeding and major problem "solved" at 24 months, with length of institutional stay, surgical complications, quality of life, and reoperation included as secondary outcomes. Also measured was the baseline economic impact of heavy menstrual bleeding. The randomized controlled trial enrolled 237 women. Institutional stay was longer, and perioperative adverse events were more common and severe for those randomized to hysterectomy. At 24 months, 94.4% and 84.9% of women randomized to hysterectomy and EA, respectively, considered their major problem to be solved; at 48 months, the numbers were similar at 98.0% and 85.1%. Postprocedure quality-of-life measures (SF-36, EuroQOL) improved similarly in both groups, but reoperation was more common for women undergoing EA (34, or 30.9%, at 60 mo), with most (32 of 34) selecting hysterectomy.At baseline, women reported missed work as well as activity and leisure limitations. Excess monetary costs were $306 per patient-year (95% CI, $30-$1,872). Excess work and home management loss costs were $2,152 (95% CI, $1,862-$2,479). It was estimated that successful treatment, regardless of the type of intervention, could result in a gain of 1.8 quality-adjusted life years. Future studies will examine and compare the impact of the study interventions on economic outcomes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Comparative Effectiveness Research
  • Endometrial Ablation Techniques
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hysterectomy*
  • Metrorrhagia / surgery*
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Treatment Outcome
  • United States
  • United States Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality