IRP scientists identify spasm in women with endometriosis-associated chronic pelvic pain
Small study suggests botulinum toxin may be potential treatment
Pelvic pain associated with endometriosis often becomes chronic and can persist (or recur) following surgical and hormonal interventions. According to results published in Regional Anesthesia & Pain Medicine, treating pelvic floor muscle spasm with botulinum toxin may relieve pain and improve quality of life. The study was conducted by scientists at the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), part of the National Institutes of Health.
“The botulinum toxin injections were incredibly effective in decreasing pain levels, as well as patients’ use of pain medications, including opioids,” said Pamela Stratton, M.D., a gynecologist and scientist at NINDS, who co-led the study with Barbara Karp, M.D., a neurologist and program director at NINDS. “Many of the women in our study reported that the pain had a profound effect on their quality of life, and this treatment may be able to help them get their lives back.”
Endometriosis occurs when the uterine tissue lining grows outside of the uterus and is estimated to affect up to 176 million women worldwide. It is an inflammatory condition that can lead to infertility and cause chronic pain. The usual gynecologic treatments include hormonal therapy and surgery to remove the growths. However, in many cases, pain returns after the interventions.
This page was last updated on Friday, January 21, 2022