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Adenomyosis: what is the impact on fertility?

Matalliotakis, Ioannis Ma,b; Katsikis, Ilias Kc; Panidis, Dimitrios Kc

Current Opinion in Obstetrics and Gynecology: June 2005 - Volume 17 - Issue 3 - p 261–264
doi: 10.1097/01.gco.0000169103.85128.c0

Purpose of review This review is timely and relevant for several reasons. The incidence of adenomyosis begins to rise from the mid-thirties. Moreover, more women are delaying their first pregnancy until later in their thirties or forties, and consequently adenomyosis is encountered more frequently in the fertility clinic during diagnostic work-up. Furthermore, it is difficult to diagnose adenomyosis before surgery, because there are no pathognomonic signs, symptoms or physical findings. Finally, reference data are very limited.

Recent findings This review refers to adenomyosis of the uterus as a factor in female infertility. The clinical presentation of adenomyosis uteri is also reviewed, as well as animal and human studies concerning the effect of adenomyosis in female infertility. Different treatment options are discussed, especially those referring to patients who wish to maintain their fecundity.

Summary Uterine adenomyosis remains a fairly frequent and debilitating disease that will be encountered with increasing incidence in the infertile female population. While spectacular advances have been made in recent years in the non-invasive diagnosis of the condition, non-surgical treatment options for infertile patients with adenomyosis arise but need to be confirmed in larger series.

aDivision of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut, USA

bDepartment of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Crete, Heraklion

cDivision of Endocrinology and Human Reproduction, Second Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece

Correspondence to Ioannis Matalliotakis, MD, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT 06520-8063, USA Fax: +1 203 785 7134; e-mail:

© 2005 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.