Fertility Outcomes after Surgical Management of Colorectal Endometriosis: A Single-center Retrospective Study

J Minim Invasive Gynecol. 2023 Mar;30(3):230-239. doi: 10.1016/j.jmig.2022.12.005. Epub 2022 Dec 9.


Study objective: To assess the pregnancy rate after surgery for colorectal endometriosis.

Design: A retrospective, single-center study performed from January 2014 to December 2019.

Setting: A university tertiary referral center.

Patients: Patients with the intention to get pregnant younger than the age of 43 years, with or without a history of infertility and who were surgically managed for colorectal endometriosis.

Interventions: Complete excision of deeply infiltrating endometriosis.

Measurements and main results: The postoperative pregnancy rate was assessed. Seventy-seven patients had surgery; their mean age was 32.5 ± 4.4 years. Preoperative documented infertility was present in 77.9% of patients (n = 60). The mean length of history of infertility was 36.2 ± 24.9 months. The procedure was performed by laparoscopic surgery in 92.2% of patients (n = 71). Nonconservative, conservative, and mixed treatment were performed in 66.2% (n = 51), 29.9% (n = 23), and 3.9% of patients (n = 3), respectively. According to the Clavien-Dindo classification, the 3B complication rate was 6.5% (n = 5). The mean follow-up was 46.7 ± 20.6 months. Clinical pregnancies were defined by the presence of intrauterine pregnancy with an embryo with cardiac activity. The postoperative pregnancy rate was 62.3% (n = 48), and 54.2% (n = 26) were spontaneous. The mean number of pregnancies was 1.2 ± 0.4 per patient. In addition, 18.7% of patients (n = 9) got pregnant twice. The mean time from surgery to pregnancy was 13.8 ± 13.1 months. The live birth rate was 89.1% (n = 41). There were no significant differences concerning the prognostic criteria reported in the literature (antimüllerian hormone level, age, presence of adenomyosis). There were no predictive criteria for live births.

Conclusion: According to this study, surgery for colorectal endometriosis results in a high postoperative pregnancy rate. Studies with a high level of evidence are needed to determine good candidates for this type of surgery.

Keywords: Assisted reproductive technology; Bowel endometriosis; Infertility; Pregnancy; Surgery.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Colorectal Neoplasms* / complications
  • Colorectal Neoplasms* / surgery
  • Endometriosis* / complications
  • Endometriosis* / surgery
  • Female
  • Fertility
  • Humans
  • Infertility, Female* / complications
  • Infertility, Female* / surgery
  • Laparoscopy* / methods
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Rate
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Treatment Outcome