Being a mother after cancer

The possibility of being a mother is not valued in most women who have suffered from cancer and have undergone cancer treatment to cope with it. However, this option is a reality, according to data from an Institut Marquès study. The reference center in assisted reproduction has a specialized Reproductive Council Unit for oncology patients whose objective is to guide patients who have suffered cancer about their possibilities of becoming a mother after treatment.

“Despite all the progress, when there is a diagnosis of cancer, it is often forgotten that tomorrow, when the disease is cured, women may want to become mothers and focus on the risks of disease recurrence during pregnancy ”, warns Dr. Marisa López-Teijón, director of the Institut Marquès .

“More and more women have to win two battles. The first, against cancer, and the second, against the impediments that medical teams tend to put in and their closest environment, which insists that they are not at risk for a pregnancy, “adds López-Teijón. Faced with this situation, the gynecologist insists: “For years we have been transmitting to the scientific community the message that they do not say” no why not “to women with a history of cancer who want to have a child .”

A message that has penetrated deeply and more and more women who have overcome cancer come to the Unit specialized in Reproductive Council. “Many will be able to have a child if they have already successfully completed chemotherapy, radiotherapy or surgery , but it is essential that their case be studied by a multidisciplinary team like ours. Only in this way can we affirm that being a mother after cancer is safe », says Dr. Álex García-Faura, scientific director of the Institut Marquès and director of the Unit specialized in Reproductive Council.

Precisely, Dr. Àlex García Faura and the andrologist Dr. Ferran Garcia will participate on February 28 in Madrid in the sessions “Reproduction and Gestation of Oncological Patients”, organized by SEGO and coordinated by the director of the Institut Marquès, Marisa López -Teijón.

The data of the Unit specialized in Reproductive Council endorse the good results achieved: 89% of the patients evaluated are fit to start a reproductive process. In addition, 82% of these have achieved a pregnancy through different treatments and 7 out of 10 have been mothers in just over 2 years since the consultation and all of them are still healthy. “The experience of the Institut Marquès shows that, if the prior evaluation approves it, they are no greater than in any pregnancy,” says the director of the Institut Marquès.

The average age of these patients is 40 years, and the most common type of cancer is breast cancer (35%), followed by hematological diseases such as leukemia or lymphoma (29%) and ovarian cancer (14%). By the time they ask for advice about becoming mothers, an average of 8 years have passed since they were diagnosed with cancer.

The most common treatments for being a mother in those patients who have overcome cancer have been: in vitro fertilization with egg donation and embryo donation. Only 10% of the women who started reproductive treatment had vitrified their eggs prior to cancer treatment.

Institut Marquès collaborates with Baby Beatles, an association created to help women who have experienced breast cancer to become mothers, guides those women who have overcome the disease and, naturally, those who do not even think about it for precisely that reason .


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