Fertility Preservation in Childhood Cancer
Today, most kids with cancer — close to 85% — will beat it and go on to live full lives. That’s why planning for their future begins the moment a child is diagnosed with cancer at Phoenix Children’s Hospital. Being able to have a child is important to pediatric cancer survivors, so preserving your child’s chance to one day have a family is an essential part of their treatment. Fertility preservation is more of a concern today than it might have been decades ago, and more options are available. The best time to talk to our team is before treatment begins, to provide as many options as possible.
Why It’s Needed
Cancer treatment today is more targeted and effective than in years past. But surgery, radiation and chemotherapy can all affect future fertility. Also, some cancers can damage organs and leave survivors infertile.
With more children surviving cancer than ever before, doctors need to consider ways to preserve fertility before treatment begins. Some methods are available to minimize the effects of chemotherapy or radiation on the body. The reproductive organs may be shielded from the effects of radiation, and medications that are less likely to cause infertility may be used in certain cases. However, some patients are still at risk for being infertile after the treatments they receive. Luckily, we are able to offer many patients the ability to store sperm, eggs or reproductive tissue for future use.
Phoenix Children’s is consistently recognized as a “Best Children’s Hospital” by U.S. News & World Report. We are one of only 24 hospitals nationwide to receive top rankings in every surveyed specialty area.