Is it possible to get pregnant after being treated for cancer?

Is it possible to get pregnant after being treated for cancer?

Many women who have defeated cancer are very acutely concerned about the issue of childbirth, they often wonder whether it is possible to bear and give birth to a healthy child after undergoing oncological treatment. All experts agree that in such women the reproductive function is not completely lost, and if it is not possible to get pregnant in a natural way, there are several options, the choice of which depends on the type of therapy and the result of treatment.

Here are some options to become a mother:

  • It is possible to get pregnant by a natural method for those women whose anti-cancer therapy has not damaged the ovaries, as indicated by the restoration of the menstrual cycle.
  • The procedure of artificial insemination (IVF) is recommended for girls with an irregular cycle, as well as those who have been unsuccessfully trying to get pregnant for six months or more.
  • Surrogacy is an assisted reproductive technology that many women who have had cancer can use.
  • Adoption is an option for those who have undergone surgery on the uterus, because they have lost their childbearing function.

Let’s look at these options in more detail.

1. The onset of pregnancy naturally

This is the best scenario for a woman who wants to get pregnant. After a successful course of cancer treatment, normalization of the menstrual cycle, resumption of ovarian and hormonal health, every woman of childbearing age wonders how long to wait until doctors allow her to attempt to get pregnant. There can be no universal answers to this question – the situation of each patient is different and should be discussed with the doctor. Some oncologists recommend waiting 2 years, because in the first two years the risk of relapse is especially high. First of all, it is necessary to wait for the maturation of new healthy eggs, which were not harmed by either the tumor or medications.

2. Artificial embryo cultivation

IVF (in vitro fertilization) is today a standard solution and a real salvation for solving infertility problems. Every fifth couple, for one reason or another, today resorts to this method and many successfully. Thanks to IVF, childless couples can have children today. These are women who have lost their uterus during treatment or women carrying a child for whom is associated with a great risk to life and health.
In preparation for the IVF procedure, a woman receives increased doses of hormones. Nevertheless, it has been proven that the IVF process does not provoke and does not cause tumor growth, however, with hormone-sensitive cancer (in particular, breast cancer), which is already developing, tumor growth has been detected. Therefore, before planting, it is necessary to make sure that the cancer is successfully cured.

3. Surrogacy

This is an absolutely innovative and expensive method – a real salvation for those couples in which a woman, for whatever reason, has a healthy egg, that is, is capable of fertilization, but cannot carry an embryo until the end of pregnancy. Such couples, having applied to the clinic of reproductive technologies, donate their biomaterial (sperm and egg), which are fertilized in a test tube. Next, the fertilized egg is planted in the uterus of the surrogate mother, with whom the contract is concluded. Genetically, the baby is the child of a couple who passed a biomaterial, an absolutely healthy surrogate mother is only a “temporary keeper” of a healthy baby.

4. Adoption

Another very popular and frequently used option. However, the adoption process is lengthy. It can “stretch” for a year or two. For a married couple in which one partner has had cancer, this process is even more difficult. Some admissions offices want to make sure the cancer doesn’t come back, which can take up to five years.

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