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A pilot double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial of the efficacy of trace elements in the treatment of endometriosis-related pain: study design and methodology

Authors Oberweis D, Madelenat P, Nisolle M, Demanet E

Received 16 July 2015

Accepted for publication 4 December 2015

Published 10 February 2016 Volume 2016:8 Pages 1—8


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Gary Johanning

Didier Oberweis,1 Patrick Madelenat,2 Michelle Nisolle,3 Etienne Demanet4

1Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics, CHU de Charleroi, Hôpital André Vésale, Montigny-le-Tilleul, Belgium; 2Private Consultation, Paris, France; 3Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics, CHR Citadelle, Liège, 4Clinical Research Unit, Charleroi, Belgium

Abstract: Endometriosis is one of the most common benign gynecological disorders, affecting almost 10%–15% of all women of reproductive age and >30% of infertile women. The pathology is associated with various distressing symptoms, particularly pelvic pain, which adversely affect patients' quality of life. It is an estrogen-dependent disease. There is evidence both in animals and in humans that metal ions can activate the estrogen receptors. They are defined as a variety of xenoestrogens, called metalloestrogens, which could act as endocrine disruptors. Therefore, it could be considered to act on this gynecological disorder using food supplements containing trace elements (ie, nutripuncture). The assumption is that they could modulate estrogen receptors and thus influence the tropism and the survival of cells involved in endometriosis. By a modulation of the antioxidant system, they might also interact with various parameters influencing tissue biochemistry. The objective of this article is to describe and discuss the design and methodology of an ongoing double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study aiming to evaluate the efficacy of metal trace elements on the reduction of pain and improvement of quality of life, in patients with a revised American Fertility Society Score Stages II–IV endometriosis, combined or not with adenomyosis, during a treatment period of 4 months. Trace elements or placebo is proposed in the absence of any other treatment or as an add-on to current therapies, such as sexual hormones, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, and surgery. A placebo run-in period of one menstrual cycle or 30 days for women in amenorrhea has been scheduled to eliminate the patients who are responding too much to the placebo. After a 1:1 ratio randomization on Day 0, the treatment with trace elements or placebo will last for 4 months (120 days).

Keywords: endometriosis, trace elements, randomized, placebo-controlled study, pain, quality of life

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