Researchers know little about how pelvis pain is caused in women with endometriosis. In a recent study published in the Archives of Gynecology and Obstetrics, researchers suggest neural growth factors may play a part in the development of endometrial pain.

Researchers screened PubMed for articles on pelvic pain associated with endometriosis. After sorting through and analyzing relevant studies, authors suggest neural growth factors may be to blame. Neurotrophins, often referred to as NTs in medical literature, may be overexpressed in women with endometriosis. The NTs of importance, according to researchers involved with the study, include brain-derived neurotrophic factor, nerve growth factor and neurotrophins 3 and 4. NTs are associated with non-neuronal cellular growth such as the growths that occur with endometriosis.

The abnormal cells and masses that grow as a result of endometriosis are hyperinnerved, which means there are more nerves in endometrial growths than healthy tissue. The lesions that grow as a result of endometriosis release a substance that causes inflammation and, subsequently, pelvic pain.

Conclusion: Abnormal cellular growth partnered with hyperinnervation and inflammation appears to be at the root of, or at least associated with, pelvic endometrial pain.

Source: Hiroshi Kobayashi, Yuki Yamada, Sachiko Morioka, Emiko Niiro, Aiko Shigemitsu, Fuminori Ito. Mechanism of pain generation for endometriosis-associated pelvic pain. Archives of Gynecology and Obstetrics. October 2013. DOI: 10.1007/s00404-013-3049-8.