Add-back therapy in the treatment of endometriosis-associated pain

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To determine the efficacy of GnRH analogue plus add-back therapy compared with GnRH analogue alone and estroprogestin in patients with relapse of endometriosis-associated pain. Randomized, controlled study. University hospital. One hundred thirty-three women with relapse of endometriosis-related pain after previous endometriosis surgery. Forty-six women were treated with GnRH analogue plus add-back therapy, 44 women were given GnRH analogue alone, and 43 women received estroprogestin, for 12 months. Pain evaluation by a visual analogue scale, quality of life in treated patients according to the SF-36 questionnaire, and occurrence of adverse effects, including bone mass density loss, at pretreatment, after 6 months of treatment, at the end of treatment (12 months), and 6 months after discontinuation of treatment. Patients treated either with GnRH analogue alone or GnRH analogue plus add-back therapy showed a higher reduction of pelvic pain, dysmenorrhea, and dyspareunia than patients treated with oral contraceptive, whereas patients treated with add-back therapy showed a better quality of life, as assessed with the SF-36 questionnaire, and adverse effects rate than the other two groups. Add-back therapy allows the treatment of women with relapse of endometriosis-associated pain for a longer period, with reduced bone mineral density loss, good control of pain symptoms, and better patient quality of life compared with GnRH analogue alone or oral contraceptive. © 2004 by American Society for Reproductive Medicine.




Zupi, E., Marconi, D., Sbracia, M., Zullo, F., De Vivo, B., Exacustos, C., & Sorrenti, G. (2004). Add-back therapy in the treatment of endometriosis-associated pain. Fertility and Sterility, 82(5), 1303–1308.

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