Sparing hope for the future: Preserving fertility in cancer patients

February 03, 2015

While families around the world delay childbearing to later in life, cancer diagnoses are affecting people ever earlier in life. When these lifestyle trends collide, we see an increasing number of young women rendered infertile by cancer or cancer treatments.

What can be done about it? What do doctors need to know? And does a cancer diagnosis mean that a patient can never have children?

The newest Special Issue from ecancermedicalscience tackles these problems, collecting the latest research in fertility-sparing cancer treatments by teams of oncology experts from Europe, North America and Latin America.

Each group of researchers presents a paper on the latest fertility-sparing research in their own area of interest, from breast cancer to cervical and ovarian cancer.

These treatments range from specialised surgical techniques to preparing and freezing eggs for future use - after the patient is in remission.

Fertility-sparing cancer treatment must strike a delicate balance, explains the Guest Editor of the Special Issue, Dr Ignacio Zapardiel of La Paz University Hospital, Spain. "Gynaecological oncologists must try to balance the fertility wishes of patients with oncological outcomes which are not always clear."

This Special Issue comes at a key time, Dr Zapardiel says. "Lifestyle has delayed the mean age for childbearing, so the number of patients suffering from a gynecologic malignancy without having their fertility desires fulfilled has also increased."

"The techniques developed for these patients may also benefit healthy women who simply want to wait for the perfect time to get pregnant," suggests author Dr Maria de Pedro of the HHM Nuevo Belén University Hospital, Spain.

Dr de Pedro contributed a research paper on fertility preservation techniques in patients with breast cancer.

"The policies of some large companies that finance the preservation of eggs for their employees may seem like funny anecdotes," says Dr de Pedro.

"But one way or another, fertility preservation is a reality for many people, and we have to adapt to live with it."
-end-
The Special Issue will be published in English and Spanish, and will be available to read for free.

ecancermedicalscience

Related Breast Cancer Articles from Brightsurf:

Oncotarget: IGF2 expression in breast cancer tumors and in breast cancer cells
The Oncotarget authors propose that methylation of DVDMR represents a novel epigenetic biomarker that determines the levels of IGF2 protein expression in breast cancer.

Breast cancer: AI predicts which pre-malignant breast lesions will progress to advanced cancer
New research at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, could help better determine which patients diagnosed with the pre-malignant breast cancer commonly as stage 0 are likely to progress to invasive breast cancer and therefore might benefit from additional therapy over and above surgery alone.

Partial breast irradiation effective treatment option for low-risk breast cancer
Partial breast irradiation produces similar long-term survival rates and risk for recurrence compared with whole breast irradiation for many women with low-risk, early stage breast cancer, according to new clinical data from a national clinical trial involving researchers from The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center - Arthur G.

Breast screening linked to 60 per cent lower risk of breast cancer death in first 10 years
Women who take part in breast screening have a significantly greater benefit from treatments than those who are not screened, according to a study of more than 50,000 women.

More clues revealed in link between normal breast changes and invasive breast cancer
A research team, led by investigators from Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, details how a natural and dramatic process -- changes in mammary glands to accommodate breastfeeding -- uses a molecular process believed to contribute to survival of pre-malignant breast cells.

Breast tissue tumor suppressor PTEN: A potential Achilles heel for breast cancer cells
A highly collaborative team of researchers at the Medical University of South Carolina and Ohio State University report in Nature Communications that they have identified a novel pathway for connective tissue PTEN in breast cancer cell response to radiotherapy.

Computers equal radiologists in assessing breast density and associated breast cancer risk
Automated breast-density evaluation was just as accurate in predicting women's risk of breast cancer, found and not found by mammography, as subjective evaluation done by radiologists, in a study led by researchers at UC San Francisco and Mayo Clinic.

Blood test can effectively rule out breast cancer, regardless of breast density
A new study published in PLOS ONE demonstrates that Videssa® Breast, a multi-protein biomarker blood test for breast cancer, is unaffected by breast density and can reliably rule out breast cancer in women with both dense and non-dense breast tissue.

Study shows influence of surgeons on likelihood of removal of healthy breast after breast cancer dia
Attending surgeons can have a strong influence on whether a patient undergoes contralateral prophylactic mastectomy after a diagnosis of breast cancer, according to a study published by JAMA Surgery.

Young breast cancer patients undergoing breast conserving surgery see improved prognosis
A new analysis indicates that breast cancer prognoses have improved over time in young women treated with breast conserving surgery.

Read More: Breast Cancer News and Breast Cancer Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.