Obstetric complications after laparoscopic excision of posterior deep infiltrating endometriosis: a case–control study​

Pregnant women with previous surgery for deep infiltrating endometriosis carry similar risk of maternal and neonatal delivery complications as women without endometriosis.

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Volume 110, Issue 3, Pages 459–466


Konstantinos Nirgianakis, M.D., Maria Luisa Gasparri, M.D., Anda-Petronela Radan, M.D., Anna Villiger, M.D., Brett McKinnon, Ph.D., Beatrice Mosimann, M.D., Andrea Papadia, Ph.D., Michael D. Mueller, Ph.D.



To study obstetric outcomes and complications in women with previously excised posterior deep infiltrating endometriosis (DIE) in comparison with women without endometriosis.


Matched case–control study.


Tertiary-level academic center.


All surgeries for endometriosis performed in the Department of Gynecology and Gynecological Oncology, University of Bern between March 2004 and July 2015, were assessed. Inclusion criteria included complete laparoscopic excision of posterior DIE. Exclusion criteria included concomitant hysterectomies, refusal to participate, and patients lost to follow-up. Each subsequent pregnancy was matched to three controls by maternal age, parity, history of cesarean, and mode of conception.



Main Outcome Measure(s)

Obstetric complications.


Among 841 patients with surgically diagnosed endometriosis, 125 satisfied the inclusion and exclusion criteria. Of these, 73 pregnancies resulted, although a further 11 patients were excluded owing to early miscarriages or extrauterine pregnancies. The final study cohort included 62 singleton pregnancies matched to 186 controls. The analysis identified an increased risk of placenta previa, gestational hypertension, and intrauterine growth restriction for the case group. The possibility of successful vaginal delivery was similar between groups. Moreover, no significant increase in risk of maternal and neonatal delivery complications, except for a slightly higher postpartum blood loss in the case group, was observed.


Despite previous surgical excision, women with history of DIE present a higher risk of placenta previa, gestational hypertonia, and intrauterine growth restriction during pregnancy. Previous surgery for DIE does not seem to predispose to failed vaginal delivery.

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Fertility and Sterility

Editorial Office, American Society for Reproductive Medicine

Fertility and Sterility® is an international journal for obstetricians, gynecologists, reproductive endocrinologists, urologists, basic scientists and others who treat and investigate problems of infertility and human reproductive disorders.