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Fertility in People Diagnosed with Cancer

Learn about the effects of HBOC on fertility and family planning, how pregnancy impacts hereditary cancer risk, and options for assisted reproduction.

Menstrual suppression

When premenopausal women with early-stage breast cancer are treated with chemotherapy there is a risk of infertility. One option that may protect the ovaries during chemotherapy is treatment with a hormonal agent known as leuprolide acetate (Lupron), which suppresses normal ovarian function and stops menstruation during treatment. Some research suggests that treatment with Lupron may increase the chance that menstruation and fertility will return after treatment. However, not all experts agree that Lupron protects fertility in premenopausal women who must undergo chemotherapy. Freezing embryos or eggs remains the best method to preserve fertility in women of reproductive age and is the most likely approach to result in pregnancy after cancer.

Updated 10/02/2017

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