Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Concerns about fertility affect treatment decisions in one-third of young breast cancer patients

13.10.2004


Study highlights need for better patient-physician communication about fertility



A new study shows that concern about infertility resulting from breast cancer therapy influenced treatment decisions in nearly one-third of young patients. The study – the largest to date to examine fertility concerns among young women with breast cancer – found that the majority of the women were very concerned about the ability to have a child as well as the impact that pregnancy might have on disease recurrence, despite the relative lack of data on these risks. The study will be published in the October 15 issue of the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

"These findings indicate that women may overestimate infertility risk, and highlight the need for enhanced communication between physicians and patients," said Ann H. Partridge, MD, MPH, Medical Oncologist at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Instructor in Medicine at Harvard Medical School, and lead author of the study. "A key challenge in discussing these issues is the lack of comprehensive data on how cancer therapy affects fertility, particularly when considering newer chemotherapy regimens, and whether getting pregnant after therapy affects the risk of disease recurrence."


Over 11,500 women under the age of 40 are diagnosed with breast cancer each year in the United States. Some breast cancer therapies may cause women to stop menstruating, either temporarily or permanently, and women who continue to have normal menstrual cycles may go through menopause earlier or may be less fertile following chemotherapy than their peers. In addition, while standard hormone-based cancer therapies do not typically cause permanent infertility, they often require years of treatment during which women are advised not to become pregnant.

Researchers surveyed 657 members of the Young Survival Coalition (YSC), a breast cancer patient advocacy group, on their attitudes about fertility. Members were required to be premenopausal and age 40 years or younger at the time of breast cancer diagnosis.

Fifty-seven percent of patients reported being very concerned about becoming infertile, regardless of their age or stage of disease, and 29% said concern about infertility influenced their decisions about treatment. Seventy-two percent discussed fertility issues with their doctors, and 17% discussed these issues with fertility specialists. While 51% of women felt satisfied after discussing the issue with their doctors, 26% felt that their fertility concerns had not been adequately addressed.

The researchers highlighted the need for more data on the impact of treatment on fertility, as well as the development of new approaches to preserving fertility in women treated for breast cancer.

"Young cancer patients have very few options for preserving their fertility, which further complicates treatment decisions," said Dr. Partridge. "Additional research in these areas will help physicians and patients select treatments that are optimized to meet both medical and future fertility goals."

Carrie Housman | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.asco.org

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Drone vs. truck deliveries: Which create less carbon pollution?
31.05.2017 | University of Washington

nachricht New study: How does Europe become a leading player for software and IT services?
03.04.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für System- und Innovationsforschung (ISI)

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Quantum thermometer or optical refrigerator?

23.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

A 100-year-old physics problem has been solved at EPFL

23.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Equipping form with function

23.06.2017 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>