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J Gynecol Oncol. 2016 Mar;27(2):e22. doi: 10.3802/jgo.2016.27.e22.

Toward precision medicine for preserving fertility in cancer patients: existing and emerging fertility preservation options for women.

Author information

1
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, IL, USA. so-youn-kim@northwestern.edu.
2
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, Seongnam, Korea.
3
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
4
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, IL, USA.

Abstract

As the number of young cancer survivors increases, quality of life after cancer treatment is becoming an ever more important consideration. According to a report from the American Cancer Society, approximately 810,170 women were diagnosed with cancer in 2015 in the United States. Among female cancer survivors, 1 in 250 are of reproductive age. Anticancer therapies can result in infertility or sterility and can have long-term negative effects on bone health, cardiovascular health as a result of reproductive endocrine function. Fertility preservation has been identified by many young patients diagnosed with cancer as second only to survival in terms of importance. The development of fertility preservation technologies aims to help patients diagnosed with cancer to preserve or protect their fertility prior to exposure to chemo- or radiation therapy, thus improving their chances of having a family and enhancing their quality of life as a cancer survivor. Currently, sperm, egg, and embryo banking are standard of care for preserving fertility for reproductive-age cancer patients; ovarian tissue cryopreservation is still considered experimental. Adoption and surrogate may also need to be considered. All patients should receive information about the fertility risks associated with their cancer treatment and the fertility preservation options available in a timely manner, whether or not they decide to ultimately pursue fertility preservation. Because of the ever expanding number of options for treating cancer and preserving fertility, there is now an opportunity to take a precision medicine approach to informing patients about the fertility risks associated with their cancer treatment and the fertility preservation options that are available to them.

KEYWORDS:

Cancer; Chemo- or radiation therapy; Fertility Preservation; Oocyte; Precision Medicine; Technologies

Comment in

PMID:
26768785
PMCID:
PMC4717227
DOI:
10.3802/jgo.2016.27.e22
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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