How is endometrial hyperplasia treated?

Treatment for endometrial hyperplasia depends on your stage in life and the severity of your symptoms. Younger women who are menstruating may benefit from medications to regulate their periods.

Women who experience endometrial hyperplasia as a symptom of perimenopause or menopause may be given a course of hormone replacement therapy (HRT). These medications contain female hormones which replace the hormones that the body no longer produces naturally. However, long-term HRT is not recommended because it may increase your risk of breast cancer, heart disease, and stroke. You should discuss the risks and benefits of HRT with your health care provider.

For women who do not respond to medical therapy, especially if there is a high risk of endometrial cancer, a hysterectomy may be required. A hysterectomy is a surgical procedure to remove the uterus.

Treatment of endometrial hyperplasia during menstruation

Younger women may benefit from hormone-releasing contraceptives including:

  • Birth control patch
  • Birth control pill
  • Birth control vaginal ring
  • Intrauterine device (IUD)

Treatment of endometrial hyperplasia during perimenopause or menopause

Women who are premenopausal or menopausal may benefit from hormone replacement therapy, including estrogen plus progestin or a synthetic version of progesterone.

What are the potential complications of endometrial hyperplasia?

Although endometrial hyperplasia usually is not cancerous, it is a risk factor for the development of cancer of the uterus. Menstruating women with endometrial hyperplasia have a risk of developing anemia (low red blood cell count).

Complications of untreated or poorly controlled endometrial hyperplasia can be serious. You can help minimize your risk of serious complications by following the treatment plan you and your health care professional design specifically for you. Complications of endometrial hyperplasia include:

  • Absenteeism from work or school
  • Anemia (low red blood cell count)
  • Cancer of the uterus
  • Inability to participate normally in activities
  • Infertility
  • Menorrhagia (heavy bleeding during your menstrual period)

References:

  1. Endometrial hyperplasia. ACOG, American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. http://www.acog.org/~/media/For%20Patients/faq147.pdf?dmc=1&ts=20140530T0934304511.
  2. Dysfunctional uterine bleeding (DUB). MedlinePlus, a service of the National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000903.htm.
INTRODUCTION

What is endometrial hyperplasia?

Endometrial hyperplasia is an excessive or abnormal thickening of the lining of the uterus. This lining, called the endometrium, thickens every month in preparation for pregnancy. If pregnancy does not occur, the lining is shed. This shedding process is called a menstrual period or menstruation. Most women have a normal menstrual period approximately every 28 days. This entire process is contro... Read more about endometrial hyperplasiaintroduction

SYMPTOMS

What are the symptoms of endometrial hyperplasia?

Symptoms of endometrial hyperplasia include changes in menstrual periods. Some women also experience symptoms that are outside of the reproductive system, such as hot flashes (also known as hot flushes), which are feelings of intense heat along with excessive sweating and a rapid heart rate.

Common symptoms of endometrial hyperplasia

You may experience endometrial hyper... Read more about endometrial hyperplasiasymptoms

CAUSES

What causes endometrial hyperplasia?

Endometrial hyperplasia is an excessive or abnormal thickening of the lining of the uterus. This lining, called the endometrium, grows and thickens every month in preparation for pregnancy. If pregnancy does not occur, the lining is shed. This shedding process, known as a menstrual period, is controlled by two hormones: estrogen and progesterone.

Estrogen is responsible for buildi... Read more about endometrial hyperplasiacauses

Medical Reviewer: Cynthia Haines, MD Last Annual Review Date: Aug 1, 2013 Copyright: © Copyright 2014 Health Grades, Inc. All rights reserved. May not be reproduced or reprinted without permission from Health Grades, Inc. Use of this information is governed by the HealthGrades User Agreement.