Clinical aspects of LHRH analogues in gynaecology: a review

Robert I. McLachlan, David L. Healy, Henry G. Burger

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LHRH agonists are synthetic peptide analogues of hypothalamic luteinizing hormone releasing hormone (LHRH) with superior potency and longer duration of gonadotrophin release. Paradoxically, repeated administration causes pituitary desensitization with diminished gonadotrophin and oestradiol secretion. A state of hypogonadotrophic hypogonadism is reversibly induced; plasma oestrogen can be reduced to castrate levels. LHRH agonists reliably induce anovulation but are unlikely to replace existing contraceptive methods in most normal women. By contrast these agents offer, for the first time, the prospect of inducing a reversible pseudomenopause essentially free of side-effects. LHRH analogues promise to have a profound impact upon the management of a diverse range of oestrogen-dependent gynaecological diseases both benign and malignant. In particular, they may shortly become the gynaecological treatment of choice in endometriosis, as well as becoming part of the management of common gynaecological disorders such as dysfunctional uterine bleeding and uterine fibroids.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)431-454
Number of pages24
JournalBritish Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 1986

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