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Papers of the Week

2021 Jan 07

Pilot Feasibility Stud



Laparoscopic treatment of isolated superficial peritoneal endometriosis for managing chronic pelvic pain in women: study protocol for a randomised controlled feasibility trial (ESPriT1).


Whitaker LHR, Doust A, Stephen J, Norrie J, Cooper K, Daniels J, Hummelshoj L, Cox E, Beatty L, Chien P, Madhra M, Vincent K, Horne AW
Pilot Feasibility Stud. 2021 Jan 07; 7(1):19.
PMID: 33413677.


Endometriosis (where endometrial-like tissue is found outside the uterus) affects ~ 176 million women worldwide and can lead to debilitating pelvic pain. Three subtypes of endometriosis exist, with ~ 80% of women having superficial peritoneal endometriosis (SPE). Endometriosis is diagnosed by laparoscopy and, if SPE is found, gynaecologists usually remove it surgically. However, many women get limited pain relief from surgical removal of SPE. We plan to undertake a future large trial where women who have only SPE found at initial laparoscopy are randomly allocated to have surgical removal (excision or ablation) of SPE, or not. Ultimately, we want to determine whether surgical removal improves overall symptoms and quality of life, or whether surgery is of no benefit, exacerbates symptoms, or even causes harm. The primary objective of this feasibility study is to determine what proportion of women with suspected SPE undergoing diagnostic laparoscopy will agree to randomisation. The secondary objectives are to determine if there are differences in key prognostic parameters between eligible women that agree to be randomised and those that decline; how many women having laparoscopy for investigation of chronic pelvic pain are eligible for the trial; the range of treatment effects and variability in outcomes and the most acceptable methods of recruitment, randomisation and assessment tools.