Application of Medicinal Plants, Acupuncture, Massage Therapy and Transcutaneous Electric Nerve Stimulation in Treatment of Endometriosis: Review Study

Document Type : Review Article


1 Instructor, Department of Midwifery, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Torbat Heydariyeh University of Medical Sciences, Torbat Heydariyeh, Iran. Health Sciences Research Center, Torbat Heydariyeh University of Medical Sciences, Torbat Heydariyeh, Iran.

2 Instructor, Department of Medicinal Plants, School of Agriculture, Technical and Vocational University (TVU), Khorasan Razavi, Neyshabour, Iran.

3 Instructor, Department of Midwifery, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Torbat Heydariyeh University of Medical Sciences, Torbat Heydariyeh, Iran. Health Sciences Research Center, Torbat Heydariyeh University of Medical Sciences, Torbat Heydariyeh, Iran


Introduction: Endometriosis is a common gynecologic problem which can lead to destruction of a woman's life. Some pharmacological techniques and surgical resection are effective in treating endometriosis pain, but are associated with high recurrence rate. This narrative review study was performed with aim to evaluate the efficacy of some complementary therapies on the control of endometriosis complications.
Methods: In this review, the related articles were reviewed by searching the databases such as Pubmed, Cochrane, Scopus, Web of Science, Uptodate, SID, Irandoc, Magiran, and as well as Google Scholar search engine without time limitations up to February 2019. Search was conducted using the keywords of “Endometriosis”, “Complementary Therapies”, “Acupuncture”, “Massage”, “Herbal Medicine”, “Transcutaneous Electric Nerve Stimulation” and their Persian equivalent.
Results: According to search strategy, 8702 articles were found in the first stage, ultimately, among them, 12 articles had inclusion criteria to enter the current review. Based on the findings of these studies, the use of acupuncture and herbal medicine have significant effect on the improvement of endometriosis parameters such as pelvic chronic pain, dyspareunia, dysmenorrhea and infertility. In addition, the results of two studies about comparison of herbal medicine and routine chemical drugs used in endometriosis treatment indicated the equality of their effects in reducing pain and improving fertility. The effect of massage therapy and use of transcutaneous electric nerve stimulation on pain management in these patients was confirmed in two separate studies.
Conclusion: The findings of present study indicate the positive effects of acupuncture, medicinal herbs, massage therapy and transcutaneous electric nerve stimulation in managing the complications of endometriosis. Therefore, the use of these therapeutic approaches and referral of patients to complementary medicine specialists is suggested as one of the most important priorities in the management of endometriosis complications.


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