How quick patients diagnosed with cancer should make the decision about fertility preservation?

2 fertility expert(s) answered this question

Answer from: Ioannis Zervomanolakis, PhD

Gynaecologist, Obstetrician Hygeia IVF Athens
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Of course, the main issue that has to do with the right time for egg freezing is the time before the start of chemotherapy. After a diagnosis of cancer, like after a breast cancer diagnosis, for example, we have around three to four weeks until we start with chemotherapy treatment or endocrine therapy in case we don’t need any chemotherapy. So this is the time that we could take advantage of in order to prepare egg freezing. There is a so-called random start possibility which means that we would start with treatments in a day that has nothing to do with the period of the patient.

So that we can take advantage of these two weeks that we really need. The right time to do it is before starting chemotherapy or any other treatment. Since there is a conflict between the chemotherapy and the preparation of egg freezing, patients that decide on egg freezing have to have completed this treatment before starting their chemotherapy.

Regarding sperm, the only time that we need is abstinence of two days before sperm freezing. There is no real conflict between the time of the diagnosis and the start of treatment. Since we always have these two days needed.

Answer from: Melvin H. Thornton, Associate Professor

Gynaecologist, Medical Director & IVF Director Global Fertility & Genetics
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About this question:

When should I freeze my eggs/sperm if I have cancer?

A cancer diagnosis is never easy. After the diagnosis, there comes a time of intensive treatment. If the patient is young or of reproductive age, they should be aware that their fertility can be disturbed after chemotherapy or radiation. When is the right time to start your fertility preservation?

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