Background: The rectosigmoid colon is affected by deep pelvic endometriosis in 3-37% of cases. In the past, treatment of the affected gastrointestinal tract generally required conversion to conventional surgery. We describe our experience with complete laparoscopic management of deep pelvic endometriosis with bowel involvement. Methods: From March 1995 to March 2003, 29 consecutive patients with endometriosis requiring laparoscopic intervention were evaluated. In seven patients (24%) colorectal involvement was identified prior to the operation. A low anterior resection was performed in four patients (57%) and a sigmoid resection in three (43%). In all cases, colonoscopy showed a normal mucosa. In all cases, treatment consisted of resection of the bowel involved together with the excision of all other implants. Data analysis included age, previous abdominal operations, previous history of endometriosis, operative time, conversion rate, complications, length of stay, and pain relief. Results: There were seven patients with colorectal involvement whose median age was 32.8 years (range, 28-40), with a history of previous abdominal operation in two (28%). Preoperative symptoms were as follow: dysmenorrea in four patients (57%), dyspareunia in four (57%), pelvic pain in seven (100%), rectal bleeding in one (14%), and tenesmus in five (71%). Mean operative time was 190 min (range, 165-230). Length of stay was 8.3 days (range, 7-11). There were no anastomotic leak and no major postoperative complication. One patient had temporary urinary retention. At a median follow-up of 38.7 months (range, 1-84), complete relief of pelvic symptoms was achieved in five patients (71%), and there was improvement in one patient. In one patient complaining of persistent pain, a new colonic implant was diagnosed two years after the surgery requiring reoperation. Conclusions: The results show that provided that the surgeon is highly skilled in laparoscopy, laparoscopic resection of deep pelvic endometriosis with rectosigmoid involvement is feasible and effective in nearly all patients. © Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2005.
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