Treatment & management

There is no known cure for endometriosis. Treatments are available to manage the symptoms associated with endometriosis and improve quality of life, including:

  • pain relievers
  • hormonal treatments, including hormonal contraceptives, which suppress ovulation and periods
  • surgery for the removal of lesions via laparoscopy (key-hole surgery) or laparotomy (abdominal surgery).

In severe cases, surgery may be performed to remove the uterus (hysterectomy) or remove parts of the bowel affected by endometriosis (The Royal Women’s Hospital 2023). In most cases, hysterectomy is performed to treat other causes of uterus pain (for example, adenomyosis), and to prevent possible future regrowth of endometriosis around these organs.

Where endometriosis has contributed to reduced fertility, surgery to remove lesions may be used to improve fertility.

Individuals may also seek treatment from allied health or complementary therapies, such as physiotherapy, acupuncture, traditional Chinese medicine, exercise, and diet modifications. Further research is needed to determine how common these treatments are among people with endometriosis and their efficacy for managing symptoms (RANZCOG 2021).

Primary health care

General practitioners are often the first point of contact for those with suspected endometriosis and are therefore instrumental in identifying symptoms, prescribing medication or providing referrals to specialists for further testing and/or treatment. The management of endometriosis in primary care presents a substantial data gap.

For further information see Data gaps and opportunities.


RANZCOG (Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists) (2021) Australian clinical practice guideline for the diagnosis and management of endometriosis, RANZCOG, accessed 25 October 2022.

The Royal Women’s Hospital (2023) Treating endometriosis, The Royal Women’s Hospital Website, accessed 6 February 2023.