Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Fertility issues in young women with breast cancer must be addressed

Date:
March 24, 2010
Source:
ECCO-the European CanCer Organisation
Summary:
More and more young women are surviving breast cancer and delaying childbirth, and it is important to take their needs and wishes about their future fertility into consideration when deciding on treatment. A British study has shown that, although survival remains the most important priority for most women, many are also concerned about being able to make choices concerning their fertility and potential to become pregnant.

At a time when more and more young women are surviving breast cancer and delaying childbirth, it is important to take their needs and wishes about their future fertility into consideration when deciding on treatment, according to a presentation at the seventh European Breast Cancer Conference (EBCC7) in Barcelona. Dr. Anne Armstrong, from the Department of Medical Oncology, the Christie NHS Foundation Trust, Manchester, UK, says that, although survival remains the most important priority for most women, many are also concerned about being able to make choices concerning their fertility and potential to become pregnant.

The use of chemotherapy and hormonal treatments in young women can have significant implications for their fertility. Such treatments can stop the ovaries producing eggs, sometimes temporarily but also permanently, thus leading to an early menopause. Options to preserve fertility include freezing eggs or embryos, and also freezing ovarian tissue for transplant at a later date, although this is a new, and to date, little-used technique.

Because of rising breast cancer survival rates and the trend to delay pregnancy until later in life, childless women increasingly experience fertility dilemmas. Dr. Armstrong and her team decided to investigate women's responses to being told that treatments affected their fertility, as well as their attitudes to fertility options.

Twenty-four women who were under 40 at diagnosis with early-stage breast cancer participated in three focus groups. Seven of them had attended specialist fertility services. The researchers found that fertility was a significant issue for many of them. "Many of them had concerns about the implications on breast cancer survival of fertility preservation, changes to treatment to improve fertility, and also pregnancy after breast cancer," says Dr. Armstrong. "They were also concerned that egg harvesting might carry risks to their survival. We found that many of them were getting conflicting advice from health professionals, and this led to increased anxiety and confusion."

The small number of women who had attended specialist fertility services were better informed of their options and of the potential risks of fertility-preserving treatment, and this appeared to be a positive experience which helped them to cope better with the issues, the researchers say. They are now planning to undertake a larger study of both patients and health professionals based on a questionnaire to explore the issues more fully.

"We hope that this will enable us to understand patients' needs better and enable us to develop services which will meet those needs effectively," says Dr. Armstrong. "At a time when breast cancer treatments are improving and allowing more women to live normal lives, it is only right that we should also be helping them, where possible, to take control of their fertility, and informing them about the opportunities to have children should they so desire."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by ECCO-the European CanCer Organisation. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

ECCO-the European CanCer Organisation. "Fertility issues in young women with breast cancer must be addressed." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 March 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/03/100324085254.htm>.
ECCO-the European CanCer Organisation. (2010, March 24). Fertility issues in young women with breast cancer must be addressed. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 15, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/03/100324085254.htm
ECCO-the European CanCer Organisation. "Fertility issues in young women with breast cancer must be addressed." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/03/100324085254.htm (accessed September 15, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, September 15, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

EU Ministers and Experts Meet to Discuss Ebola Reponse

EU Ministers and Experts Meet to Discuss Ebola Reponse

AFP (Sep. 15, 2014) The European Commission met on Monday to coordinate aid that the EU can offer to African countries affected by the Ebola outbreak. Duration: 00:58 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Despite The Risks, Antibiotics Still Overprescribed For Kids

Despite The Risks, Antibiotics Still Overprescribed For Kids

Newsy (Sep. 15, 2014) A new study finds children are prescribed antibiotics twice as often as is necessary. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
FDA Eyes Skin Shocks Used at Mass. School

FDA Eyes Skin Shocks Used at Mass. School

AP (Sep. 15, 2014) The FDA is considering whether to ban devices used by the Judge Rotenberg Educational Center in Canton, Massachusetts, the only place in the country known to use electrical skin shocks as aversive conditioning for aggressive patients. (Sept. 15) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Respiratory Virus Spreads To Northeast, Now In 21 States

Respiratory Virus Spreads To Northeast, Now In 21 States

Newsy (Sep. 14, 2014) The respiratory virus Enterovirus D68, which targets children, has spread from the Midwest to 21 states. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins