Meissner, Karin; Böhling, Barbara; Schweizer-Arau, Annemaria
Long-Term Effects of Traditional Chinese Medicine and Hypnotherapy in Patients with Severe Endometriosis - a Retrospective Evaluation.
In: Forschende Komplementärmedizin, No. 6: pp. 314-320
Background: 15% of patients with severe endometriosis suffer from pain symptoms in spite of pharmacological and surgical treatments. In this retrospective study we aimed to assess the effectiveness of a combined therapy of Traditional Chinese medicine and hypnotherapy (systemic autoregulation therapy, SART) as a novel treatment for endometriosis-associated symptoms. Patients and Methods: 47 patients with severe endometriosis, which were treated with SART, were followed-up by standardized telephone interviews. Follow-up data were compared to baseline assessments. Results: Median follow-up time was 5 years. The median intensity of endometriosis-associated pain had decreased from 8 to 3 points on a 0-10 point visual analogue scale (p < 0.001). 18 patients (38%) were free of pain, and the number of patients using pain medication had decreased from 38 to 19 (from 81% to 40%). 17 out of the 31 women trying for a pregnancy (55%) showed a total of 21 births at follow-up. Exploratory analyses revealed that larger decreases in pain scores correlated significantly with longer treatment durations, suggesting a dose-response relationship. Conclusion: Treatment of endometriosis with a holistic approach of Chinese medicine and hypnotherapy may result in a substantial reduction of pain as well as increased birth rates in patients with therapy-refractory endometriosis. Randomized controlled studies to further investigate the effectiveness of SART are highly warranted.