Postoperative complications following bowel endometriosis surgery by shaving, disc excision or segmental resection: a three-arm comparative analysis of 364 consecutive cases.

Employing a strategy prioritizing the conservative management of bowel endometriosis, whenever possible, may reduce the risk of severe postoperative complications.

Volume 109, Issue 1, Pages 172–178.e1


Carole Abo, M.D., Salwa Moatassim, M.D., Noemie Marty, M.D., Mathilde Saint Ghislain, M.D., Emmanuel Huet, M.D., Valérie Bridoux, M.D., Ph.D., Jean Jacques Tuech, M.D., Ph.D., Horace Roman, M.D., Ph.D.



To assess the postoperative complications related to three surgical procedures used in colorectal endometriosis: rectal shaving, disc excision, and segmental resection.


Retrospective comparative study using data prospectively recorded in the North-West Inter Regional Female Cohort for Patients with Endometriosis (CIRENDO) database.


University tertiary referral center.


A total of 364 consecutive patients with deep endometriosis infiltrating the rectosigmoid, were stratified into three arms according to the technique used.


All patients had a laparoscopic surgical procedure to treat bowel endometriosis: rectal shaving (145 patients), disc excision (80 patients), or segmental colorectal resection (139 patients).

Main Outcome Measure(s)

Postoperative complication rate was assessed using Clavien-Dindo classification.


Clavien 3b postoperative complications were recorded in 43 patients (11.8%), two thirds of whom were managed by segmental colorectal resection (P<.001). Fourteen cases of rectovaginal fistula (3.8%) were reported: three in the shaving arm (2.1%), three in the disc excision arm (3.7%), and eight in the segmental colorectal resection arm (5.8%) (P=.13). Twenty-four cases (6.6%) of pelvic abscess were recorded in patients free of fistula or leakage. One year after the surgery pregnancy rate (PRs) and delivery rate were comparable between patients with or without severe complications who intended to get pregnant. Three years postoperatively, the PR in infertile patients was 66.7%, with spontaneous conception in 50% of cases.


Our data suggest that using a strategy prioritizing shaving, whenever it is possible, could be related to a reduction in severe complication rates. However, prudence is required before concluding that extensive disease should not be treated by segmental resection because of the risk of complications.

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