Fertility-sparing surgery for diffuse adenomyosis: a narrated, stepwise approach to the Osada procedure

A narrated video demonstrating an 8-step surgical approach to the Osada procedure, including common pitfalls and techniques to improve perioperative outcomes and anatomic optimization.
Fertility-sparing surgery for diffuse adenomyosis: a narrated, stepwise approach to the Osada procedure


Catherine Lu, M.D., Caroline Corbett, M.D., Jason E. Elliott, M.Sc., M.D., Devon Evans, M.D.



To equip reproductive surgeons with an approach to the Osada procedure and critical prophylactic hemostatic measures that optimize perioperative outcomes.


Stepwise demonstration of the Osada procedure with narrated video footage.


Definitive management of symptomatic adenomyosis requires hysterectomy. However, adenomyomectomy can improve symptoms and restore anatomy while maintaining fertility potential. Limited but comparable perioperative outcomes exist for minimally invasive methods of adenomyomectomy, and most involve resection of focal, not diffuse, adenomyosis. Among the literature involving resection of diffuse adenomyosis using minimally invasive methods, relatively small volumes of resected tissue are reported and none include obstetric outcomes. Most published reports for excision of diffuse adenomyosis involve laparotomic resection, likely because of specific intraoperative challenges curtailed by this approach. In response, a laparoscopic-assisted laparotomic approach was developed in 2011 by Dr. Hisao Osada, a reproductive surgeon in Japan. This procedure involves aggressive excision of adenomyotic tissue with prophylactic hemostatic techniques and subsequent uterine wall reconstruction using a triple-flap method. Compared with other excisional methods for diffuse adenomyomectomy, the Osada procedure has the best reported obstetric outcomes.


A 37-year-old nulliparous female presented with pelvic pain, bulk symptoms, abnormal uterine bleeding, and infertility. Physical examination demonstrated a 20-week, bulky uterus with limited bimanual mobility. Her endometrial cavity was inaccessible because of marked anatomic distortion. Magnetic resonance imaging revealed marked abnormality of her endometrial contour because of a 15 cm adenomyoma with diffuse adenomyomatous tissue in the posterior uterine compartment. Prior interventions included a trial of combined hormonal contraceptive, leuprolide acetate, and tranexamic acid. She was interested in fertility-sparing adenomyomectomy to address symptoms and fertility potential and chose to proceed with the Osada procedure. She was optimized medically with oral and parenteral iron therapy to bring her hemoglobin from 55–111 g/L preoperatively. Institutional review board approval and informed consent from the patient were obtained.


The Osada procedure was performed using the following 8 surgical steps:
  • 1.
    Laparoscopic lysis of adhesions and excision of comorbid endometriosis.
  • 2.
    Pfannenstiel incision and exteriorization of the uterus.
  • 3.
    Establishment of prophylactic medical and surgical measures for hemostasis.
    • 3A.
      Vascular clamps on utero-ovarian ligaments.
    • 3B.
      Tourniquet around uterine isthmus.
    • 3C.
      Myometrial vasopressin injection.
  • 4.
    Bisection of the uterus, identification of endometrial cavity, marking of 1 cm margins.
  • 5.
    Excision of adenomyosis.
  • 6.
    Reconstruction of the uterus using the triple-flap method.
  • 7.
    Reperfusion of the uterus.
  • 8.
    Abdominal closure.
Systemic administration of tranexamic acid was also administered intraoperatively.

Main Outcome Measure(s)

Perioperative blood loss, anatomic normalization, symptom remediation, and maintenance of fertility potential.


Perioperative blood loss was minimal, 469 g of adenomyotic tissue was extracted, and discharge was on postoperative day 2 without any complications. Three months later, cyclic pain and bleeding had improved markedly, ultrasound confirmed Doppler flow throughout the uterus, hysterosalpingogram demonstrated a nonobliterated endometrial cavity and tubal patency, and magnetic resonance imaging confirmed normalized uterine dimensions measuring 11 × 7 cm from 19 × 10 cm. Most literature supports waiting at least 6–12 months and until demonstration of normalized uterine blood flow in the operated area before attempting conception.


Fertility-sparing excision of diffuse adenomyosis can be achieved safely using the Osada procedure, following the 8 discrete steps demonstrated in this video. Reproductive surgeons can reference this video to teach and maintain this important procedure.

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