International research networks

International research networks

Endometriosis affects an estimated 10% of women in the reproductive-age group with a significant impact on their physical, mental, and social well-being.

This equates to approximately 176 million women across the world, who have to deal with this disease during the prime years of their lives. There is no known cure and most current medical treatments are not suitable long term due to their side effect profiles. A major challenge in endometriosis continues to be the lack of funding for endometriosis research, the isolation of programmes within countries, inadequate communications among centres, and ineffeciencies of research when information and data are not shared.

Participants of the international consensus workshop on 15 March 2008

To address these issues a World Endometriosis Society (WES) and World Endometriosis Research Foundation (WERF) held its first consensus workshop on 15 March 2008 immediately following the 10th World Congress on Endometriosis in Melbourne, Australia.

The workshop was chaired by Peter Rogers, Australia, and was tasked with establishing recommendations for priorities in endometriosis research.

Nine moderators explored an extensive list of topics grouped under five sub-headings:

  • Diagnosis
  • Classification and prognosis
  • Treatment and outcome
  • Epidemiology
  • Pathophysiology

The main conclusion was that there is a need for a multi-disciplinary approach to research in all aspects of endometriosis, to include reproductive medicine physicians, reproductive surgeons, biologists, pathologists, oncologists, epidemiologists, geneticists, immunologists, toxicologists, pain specialists, infectious disease specialists, biostatisticians, bioinformaticians, and others to enable effective, accurate, and timely diagnosis, determination of those at risk, and prevention and treatment of endometriosis, and associated disorders.

Twentyfour recommendations for research were developed, and have been published in Reproductive Sciences, which have made the paper freely available to all WES members (Rogers PAW et al. Priorities for Endometriosis Research: Recommendations From an International Consensus Workshop. Reprod Sci 2009;16:335-346).

Second consensus workshop took place in 2011!

The 2nd consensus workshop, intended to evaluate status quo and update future research directions was held on 4 September 2011 in connection with the 11th World Congress on Endometriosis.

A summary of this meeting will be available on this site soon – watch this space!