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Diagn Pathol. 2013 Dec 2;8:194. doi: 10.1186/1746-1596-8-194.

Extrapelvic endometriosis: a rare entity or an under diagnosed condition?

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  • 1Pulmonary Department, "G, Papanikolaou" General Hospital, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Exohi 1100, 57010 Thessaloniki, Greece.


Endometriosis is a clinical entity characterized by the presence of normal endometrial mucosa abnormally implanted in locations other than the uterine cavity. Endometriosis can be either endopelvic or extrapelvic depending on the location of endometrial tissue implantation. Despite the rarity of extrapelvic endometriosis, several cases of endometriosis of the gastrointestinal tract, the urinary tract, the upper and lower respiratory system, the diaphragm, the pleura and the pericardium, as well as abdominal scars loci have been reported in the literature. There are several theories about the pathogenesis and the pathophysiology of endometriosis. Depending on the place of endometrial tissue implantation, endometriosis can be expressed with a wide variety of symptoms. The diagnosis of this entity is neither easy nor routine. Many diagnostic methods clinical and laboratory have been used, but none of them is the golden standard. The multipotent localization of endometriosis in combination with the wide range of its clinical expression should raise the clinical suspicion in every woman with periodic symptoms of extrapelvic organs. Finally, the therapeutic approach of this clinical entity is also correlated with the bulk of endometriosis and the locum that it is found. It varies from simple observation, to surgical treatment and treatment with medication as well as a combination of those. Virtual slides: The virtual slide(s) for this article can be found here:

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