Endometriosis Excision Specialist in Palo Alto, California
Can Endometriosis Be Cured?
Some have claimed that endometriosis can be cured by a thorough excision surgery or by pregnancy or hysterectomy or medicines or life style changes. As much as we wish there were a cure, unfortunately, these claims are absolutely untrue. Surgery does not cure endometriosis; lasers do not cure endometriosis; pregnancy does not cure endometriosis; hysterectomy does not cure endometriosis; menopause does not cure endometriosis; birth control pills do not cure endometriosis; dietary changes do not cure endometriosis. There is no cure for endometriosis. The myth that excision surgery by an excision expert can cure endometriosis has persisted because some women do indeed experience a remission of symptoms after one particular surgery, or after a few surgeries that didn’t appear to help, followed by one last surgery, which did. At first glance, this would make it seem as if endometriosis is curable if only one could just get the right surgery. However, there are other women who have a more recalcitrant form of endometriosis, as well as other factors, who, despite having the exact same surgery by the exact same surgeon still experience recurrent endometriosis.
In short, extrapolating the experience of one patient to that of an entire population produces misleading conclusions because women have unique genetic, endocrinologic, and environmental modulators, as well as different forms of endometriosis that vary widely in symptoms and recurrence patterns. Patients with severe, stage IV endometriosis, for example, often have higher recurrence rates than those with less severe disease (stage I-II).
However, what is true is that surgeons have varying degrees of skill and experience, which definitely does make a difference. In fact, as dozens of studies have repeatedly found, the two main factors correlated with successful surgical outcomes are the skill and experience of the surgeon. It is for this reason that women with endometriosis are urged to seek care from an endometriosis specialist.