A program for information and treatment to preserve fertility for patients undergoing treatment for cancer and other medical therapies that may disrupt their fertility.
Cancer affects people at all ages with the risk for most types inceasing with age.Cancer causes about 13% of all human deaths in 2007(7.6 million). Cancer is the leading cause of death among the U.S. children between infancy and age 15. Approximately 10,730 new cases of paediatric cancer are expected to be diagnosed in children 0-14 years of age in 2009(National Institute of Cancer,U.S.A).
Fortunately, advances in cancer treatment have increased survival in all of these patients. Today, early cancer detection and multimodal treatment with surgery, chemotherapy and radiation have improved the quality of life for cancer patients. Being able to look to a future beyond cancer also prompts these patients and their parents to ask the question, “Will I be able to have a family after my cancer treatment?” Fortunately, new cancer treatment options and advanced reproductive technologies offer all cancer patients the hope of fertility preservation. Often combined intervention by the patient’s primary physician/oncologist and a fertility specialist offers men, women and children the chance to be a cancer survivor AND a parent.
Children, adolescents, and their parents often benefit from hearing the effect of treatment on reproductive organs and the availability of fertility-sparing treatment. In addition, hormone replacement therapy may be beneficial to promote more normal reproductive health. Adult survivors of childhood cancer often talk about the types of fertility treatment available to help them become a parent today. Adult men and women may need to hear how they can preserve their current fertility, and treatments to look to in the future.