Image-guided treatment avoids tubo-ovarian abscess surgery


Image-guided drainage of tubo-ovarian abscesses help women avoid surgery, according to a study performed at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, USA.

The study included 54 tubo-ovarian abscesses in 46 patients. Results showed that “image guided tubo-ovarian abscess drainage avoided salpinto-oophorectomy (the surgical removal of a patient’s ovary and fallopian tube) in 95% of pelvic inflammatory disease cases, and in 72% of cases overall,” according to Robin Levenson, lead author of the study.

“Image-guided drainage should be considered as an alternative to salpino-oopherectomy for the treatment of tubo-ovarian abscesses. Successful treatment of the patient’s abscess and avoidance of surgery are important benefits of image-guided drainage,” said Levenson. “Additionally, salvation of a patient’s ovaries and fallopian tubes may preserve fertility as well as the endogenous hormones produced by the ovary.

“The procedure is quite safe. The complication rate in our series of image-guided drainage of tubo-ovarian abscesses has been extremely low. Only two out of 46 (4%) patients had minor complications. No major complications occurred.

“Awareness of the success of image-guided drainage in the treatment of tubo-ovarian abscesses will hopefully lead to fewer women requiring surgery and the resulting loss of their ovaries and fallopian tubes.”

This study will be presented at the 2009 American Roentgen Ray Society (ARRS) Annual Meeting in Boston, USA, on Tuesday 28 April.