Pathogenesis and pathophysiology of endometriosis

Fertil Steril. 2012 Sep;98(3):511-9. doi: 10.1016/j.fertnstert.2012.06.029. Epub 2012 Jul 20.


Originally described over three hundred years ago, endometriosis is classically defined by the presence of endometrial glands and stroma in extrauterine locations. Endometriosis is an inflammatory, estrogen-dependent condition associated with pelvic pain and infertility. This work reviews the disease process from theories regarding origin to the molecular basis for disease sequelae. A thorough understanding of the histopathogenesis and pathophysiology of endometriosis is essential to the development of novel diagnostic and treatment approaches for this debilitating condition.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Adhesion
  • Cell Survival
  • Endometriosis / etiology*
  • Endometriosis / pathology
  • Endometriosis / physiopathology
  • Endometrium / pathology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Inflammation / complications
  • Neovascularization, Physiologic