Breast cancer awareness and fertility support for cancer patients
Breast cancer is one of the most common cancers that affects women in the United States. Each year, more than 200,000 women and more than 2,000 men are diagnosed with it. One of the many challenges that cancer patients face is the threat to fertility from cancer treatment.
Chemotherapy and radiation treatment can damage a woman’s ovaries and reduce the quantity and quality of her eggs. These cancer treatments can also damage the quality of a man’s sperm and his ability to produce it. But there is hope. Oncofertility is the field of medicine dedicated to helping cancer patients preserve and protect their fertility. Our Virginia fertility center provides this fertility support for cancer patients.
Fertility support for cancer patients
Cancer patients who visit our Virginia fertility center have options to preserve their fertility before potentially fertility-damaging treatment begins. We are proud to offer fertility support for cancer patients.
- Sperm cryopreservation. For male cancer patients who wish to preserve their fertility, sperm can be retrieved from the ejaculate. If necessary, sperm can also be surgically extracted from the testes or from the testicular tissue. Our laboratory cryopreserves the sperm and stores it until the man decides to move forward with having children.
- Egg retrieval and cryopreservation. Female cancer patients can preserve their fertility by having their eggs retrieved and cryopreserved. Our specialist will medically stimulate the ovaries to produce many mature eggs at once, retrieve the eggs and freeze them for future use. When the patient is ready to become a mother, she can undergo an IVF treatment cycle using her frozen eggs.
- Embryo cryopreservation. Cancer patients can have their eggs retrieved and fertilized with sperm in the lab. Sperm can come from the hopeful father or a donor. We then freeze and store the healthy embryos that develop for a future IVF cycle.
A cancer diagnosis does not eliminate the hope of having a biological child. Cryopreservation can keep that hope alive for the future.
Our services can help
Cancer patients who visit our Virginia fertility center can learn more about fertility support for cancer patients. Recent research suggests that even learning about options can improve quality of life after cancer treatment, regardless of whether patients takes steps to preserve their fertility.
Learn more about oncofertility by contacting our office.