Minimally invasive surgery when treating endometriosis has a positive effect on health and on quality of work life of affected women

Wullschleger, Marcel; Imboden, Sara; Wanner, Juliette Denise; Mueller, M. D. (2015). Minimally invasive surgery when treating endometriosis has a positive effect on health and on quality of work life of affected women. Human reproduction, 30(3), pp. 553-557. Oxford University Press 10.1093/humrep/deu356

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STUDY QUESTION: What is the effect of the minimally invasive surgical treatment of endometriosis on health and on quality of work life (e.g. working performance) of affected women? SUMMARY ANSWER: Absence from work, performance loss and the general negative impact of endometriosis on the job are reduced significantly by the laparoscopic surgery. WHAT IS KNOWN ALREADY: The benefits of surgery overall and of the laparoscopic method in particular for treating endometriosis have been described before. However, previous studies focus on medical benchmarks without including the patient's perspective in a quantitative manner. STUDY DESIGN, SIZE, DURATION: A retrospective questionnaire-based survey covering 211 women with endometriosis and a history of specific laparoscopic surgery in a Swiss university hospital, tertiary care center. Data were returned anonymously and were collected from the beginning of 2012 until March 2013. PARTICIPANTS/MATERIALS, SETTING, METHODS: Women diagnosed with endometriosis and with at least one specific laparoscopic surgery in the past were enrolled in the study. The study investigated the effect of the minimally invasive surgery on health and on quality of work life of affected women. Questions used were obtained from the World Endometriosis Research Foundation (WERF) Global Study on Women's Health (GSWH) instrument. The questionnaire was shortened and adapted for the purpose of the present study. MAIN RESULTS AND THE ROLE OF CHANCE: Of the 587 women invited to participate in the study, 232 (232/587 = 40%) returned the questionnaires. Twenty-one questionnaires were excluded due to incomplete data and 211 sets (211/587 = 36%) were included in the study. Our data show that 62% (n = 130) of the study population declared endometriosis as influencing the job during the period prior to surgery, compared with 28% after surgery (P < 0.001). The mean (maximal) absence from work due to endometriosis was reduced from 2.0 (4.9) to 0.5 (1.4) hours per week (P < 0.001). The mean (maximal) loss in working performance after the surgery averaged out at 5.7% (12.6%) compared with 17.5% (30.5%) before this treatment (P < 0.001). LIMITATIONS, REASONS FOR CAUTION: The mediocre response rate of the study weakens the representativeness of the investigated population. Considering the anonymous setting a non-responder investigation was not performed. A bias due to selection, information and negativity effects within a retrospective survey cannot be excluded, although study-sensitive questions were provided in multiple ways. The absence of a control group (sham group; e.g. patients undergoing specific diagnostic laparoscopy without treatment) is a further limitation of the study. WIDER IMPLICATIONS OF THE FINDINGS: Our study shows that indicated minimally invasive surgery has a clear positive effect on the wellbeing and working performance of women suffering from moderate to severe endometriosis. Furthermore, national net savings in indirect costs with the present number of surgeries is estimated to be €10.7 million per year. In an idealized setting (i.e. without any diagnosis delay) this figure could be more than doubled. STUDY FUNDING/COMPETING INTERESTS: The study was performed on behalf of the University Hospital of Bern (Inselspital) as one of the leading Swiss tertiary care centers. The authors do not declare any competing interests.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Gynaecology, Paediatrics and Endocrinology (DFKE) > Clinic of Gynaecology
04 Faculty of Medicine > Pre-clinic Human Medicine > BioMedical Research (DBMR) > DBMR Forschung Mu35 > Forschungsgruppe Endometriose und gynäkologische Onkologie
04 Faculty of Medicine > Pre-clinic Human Medicine > BioMedical Research (DBMR) > DBMR Forschung Mu35 > Forschungsgruppe Endometriose und gynäkologische Onkologie

04 Faculty of Medicine > Pre-clinic Human Medicine > Institute of Physiology

UniBE Contributor:

Wullschleger, Marcel; Imboden, Sara and Wanner, Juliette Denise

Subjects:

600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health

ISSN:

0268-1161

Publisher:

Oxford University Press

Language:

English

Submitter:

Stefan von Känel-Zimmermann

Date Deposited:

14 Mar 2016 16:31

Last Modified:

28 Oct 2019 18:50

Publisher DOI:

10.1093/humrep/deu356

PubMed ID:

25567622

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.74588

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/74588

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