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JBRA Assist Reprod. 2017 Jun 1;21(2):84-88. doi: 10.5935/1518-0557.20170021.

Knowledge regarding fertility preservation in cancer patients: a population-based survey among Brazilian people during the Pink October awareness event.

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Huntington - Medicina Reprodutiva. Sao Paulo, SP, Brasil.
Disciplina de Ginecologia Endocrinológica, Departamento de Ginecologia, Escola Paulista de Medicina da Universidade Federal de São Paulo (UNIFESP-EPM). Sao Paulo, SP, Brasil.
Disciplina de Ginecologia, Departamento de Obstetrícia e Ginecologia, Faculdade de Medicina, Universidade de Sao Paulo (FMUSP). Sao Paulo, SP, Brasil.



The aim of this study was to assess the knowledge about the risk of infertility in cancer patients after treatment, and the options for fertility preservation based on a survey carried out during the 2013 Pink October campaign.


This survey was carried out during the 2013 Pink October event in the most important public park of São Paulo, Brazil. Approximately 900 people expressed interest in learning about breast cancer prevention and fertility preservation by participating in workshops, and 242 people filled out a questionnaire.


Most of the respondents (78.5%) were women, and one-fourth (25%) had at least one relative with gynecological cancer. Among women over 40 years of age, 86.3% had been screened for breast cancer at some point. However, few participants (34.0%) were aware that cancer treatment can lead to infertility or had heard about fertility preservation options (22.0%). Having a relative with cancer did not influence their knowledge about fertility preservation (22.4% versus 21.3%; p=0.864). However, a higher educational level was significantly associated with more knowledge about the effects of cancer on fertility and options for fertility preservation.


The majority of participants did not have knowledge about the impact of oncologic treatment on fertility and did not know that there are options to preserve fertility in cancer patients. Awareness of infertility risk factors is an essential first step to safeguard future fertility, and therefore, more educational initiatives are needed to spread knowledge about oncofertility.


cancer; fertility preservation; oncofertility; survey

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