Men and women receive different fertility advice following cancer diagnosis
There are significant gaps in the information women receive about their future fertility following cancer diagnosis, suggests a new paper published today (30 May) in BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology.
Infertility can be a side-effect of cancer treatment and there are increasing numbers of people of reproductive age undergoing such treatment.
This study - led by the University of Aberdeen and NHS Grampian - looks at perceptions and use of fertility preservation techniques in both men and women of reproductive age who have recently been diagnosed with cancer.
It is the first study to explore the experience of discussing future fertility at the time of cancer diagnosis amongst younger men and women.
Sixteen men and 18 women aged 17-49 took part along with 15 health professionals concerned in cancer care. Patients were receiving treatment for blood related and other cancers between August 2008 and June 2010.
Patients were interviewed soon after their first consultation after a diagnosis of cancer had been made. Topics discussed included: patients' perceptions and understanding of the initial diagnosis, the prognosis and their future reproductive choices; perceived quality and source of information received, communication and support; and the role of partners, family members, friends and healthcare professionals.
In addition, staff were asked about their opinions on the information given to younger people with cancer, their knowledge and views of the treatments available with respect to fertility preservation and their perceptions of patients' priorities.
The paper found that almost all of the patients had been given written information about cancer treatment, which included a small section on fertility preservation.
Men and women were given different information reflecting the varying fertility preservation options available, perceived success rates and subsequent delay in accessing cancer treatment.
Men were actively encouraged to consider storage of sperm, even if they had children already. Nearly all had a discussion with staff about sperm banking and a local protocol was in place for immediate referral.
However, in contrast, few women interviewed could remember fertility preservation being discussed and there was no protocol in place.
From the staff interviews, the main reason why staff did not discuss fertility preservation with the majority of women was their belief that treatment was perceived to be more urgent. The study also found that health professionals did not discuss future fertility in detail because they felt patients were given a wealth of information during their first visit and that fertility would not be affected if treatment using first line drugs was successful.
Valerie Peddie, Fertility Nurse Specialist/Research Midwife, School of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Aberdeen, and co-author of the paper said: "It has been widely argued that at the time of diagnosis, patients should be provided with accurate information about the potential risk of impaired fertility after treatment for cancer irrespective of whether local facilities for gamete cryopreservation exist.
"However in reality, the immediate emphasis is often on treatment, with little time available to discuss future fertility or options for fertility preservation.
"Our study has demonstrated significant gaps in the information provided to young women diagnosed with cancer and suggests the need for an early appointment with a fertility expert."
BJOG Deputy Editor-in-Chief, Pierre Martin-Hirsch, added: "This is a unique study as it looks specifically at younger men and women's experiences however it is a small scale study and more research needs to be conducted in a larger population. Following that care pathways should be developed looking at fertility and cancer treatment."
Provided by Wiley
- Breast cancer patients lack adequate fertility preservation advice Nov 07, 2011 | not rated yet | 0
- Few young women with cancer take steps to preserve fertility during treatments Mar 26, 2012 | not rated yet | 0
- Radiation oncologists are discussing infertility risks with young cancer patients Mar 08, 2012 | not rated yet | 0
- Cancer and fertility -- young women speak up Jan 09, 2012 | not rated yet | 0
- Fertility procedures need not delay breast cancer treatment for younger women Nov 12, 2009 | not rated yet | 0
- Motion perception revisited: High Phi effect challenges established motion perception assumptions Apr 23, 2013 | 3 / 5 (2) | 2
- Anything you can do I can do better: Neuromolecular foundations of the superiority illusion (Update) Apr 02, 2013 | 4.5 / 5 (11) | 5
- The visual system as economist: Neural resource allocation in visual adaptation Mar 30, 2013 | 5 / 5 (2) | 9
- Separate lives: Neuronal and organismal lifespans decoupled Mar 27, 2013 | 4.9 / 5 (8) | 0
- Sizing things up: The evolutionary neurobiology of scale invariance Feb 28, 2013 | 4.8 / 5 (10) | 14
Calculating on-axis elements of a solenoid
6 hours ago I wanted to mention that this solenoid has many winds over many layers. The thickness of the windings is 2.4 inches coming off of the engineering...
latitude & longitude & air pressure
8 hours ago Hi there, I have a peculiar question. Imagine that you are in a earth position, obtained by google, that gives you the latitude and longitude....
Differences of Classical Mechanics when learned with Calc vs algebra?
11 hours ago what are the differences? Every example I find usually has a derivative or integral or some kind of calculus defined concept that seems to make it...
what is the distance traveled
15 hours ago A rough sketch of experiment. Image: http://i43.tinypic.com/14t4sk5.png the red dots represent a side view of path traveled, F is downward force...
Image of a Convex Lens Cut in Half Horizontally
19 hours ago Hello everyone, A friend of mine came up with this question in class and I really do not have a good answer. Suppose you have a convex lens...
Ray tracing through optical system of thick lenses
19 hours ago Can you advise me a free software that allow to draw rays passed throught system of thick lenses (preferable in 3D)?
- More from Physics Forums - Classical Physics
More news stories
A study of around 1,000 UK mothers and their children, published in The Lancet, has revealed that iodine deficiency in pregnancy may have an adverse effect on children's mental development. The research raises concerns that t ...
Obstetrics & gynaecology May 21, 2013 | not rated yet | 0
Nearly three out of four pregnant women experience constipation, diarrhea or other bowel disorders during their pregnancies, a Loyola University Medical Center study has found.
Obstetrics & gynaecology May 20, 2013 | not rated yet | 0
New research indicates that women's reproductive function may be tied to their immune status. Previous studies have found this association in human males, but not females.
Obstetrics & gynaecology May 17, 2013 | not rated yet | 0 |
Elsevier today announced the publication of a recent study in Reproductive BioMedicine Online on 5-day old human blastocysts showing that those with an abnormal chromosomal composition can be identified by the rate at whic ...
Obstetrics & gynaecology May 16, 2013 | not rated yet | 0
While global attention has for decades been focused on reducing maternal mortality, population-based data on other causes of death among women of reproductive age has been virtually non-existent. A study conducted by researchers ...
Obstetrics & gynaecology May 14, 2013 | not rated yet | 0
Swiss scientists reveal the mechanism responsible for aging hidden deep within mitochondria—and dramatically slow it down in worms by administering antibiotics to the young.
14 hours ago | 4.9 / 5 (7) | 0 |
Existing research shows that bicyclists who wear helmets have an 88 percent lower risk of brain injury, but researchers at Boston Children's Hospital found that simply having bicycle helmet laws in place showed a 20 percent ...
3 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
Researchers from Queen Mary, University of London have led the largest sequencing study of human disease to date, investigating the genetic basis of six autoimmune diseases.
14 hours ago | 4.7 / 5 (3) | 0 |
Until now, little was scientifically known about the human potential to cultivate compassion—the emotional state of caring for people who are suffering in a way that motivates altruistic behavior.
11 hours ago | 5 / 5 (2) | 2 |
11 hours ago | 4 / 5 (2) | 0 |
A new approach for immunizing against influenza elicited a more potent immune response and broader protection than the currently licensed seasonal influenza vaccines when tested in mice and ferrets. The vaccine ...
12 hours ago | not rated yet | 0 |