Fertility Preservation for Cancer Patients
Patients with a cancer diagnosis who wish to build a family in the future should contact a New York Reproductive Wellness fertility specialist immediately. Cancer patients are given priority treatment and are handled with special care by our entire staff. Radiation therapy, chemotherapy, and/or surgeries related to cancer treatment may affect the fertility of both men and women.
Possible effects of cancer treatment on women:
- Damage to ovarian function
- Damage to eggs
- Damage to hormone-producing glands
- Premature menopause
Possible effects of cancer treatment on men:
- Decrease in production of sperm
- Lowered testosterone levels
- Damage to reproductive organs
By freezing your eggs or sperm prior to cancer treatment you will be able to use them during a fertility treatment cycle when you are cancer free.
What’s the processes for freezing eggs and sperm?
Egg Freezing (Cryopreservation)
During an egg freezing cycle a woman will be prescribe medications to stimulate the ovaries to produce more mature eggs. The eggs are then retrieved, and flash frozen via a process called vitrification. The eggs can be combined with sperm with the assistance of in vitro fertilization (IVF) and implanted back into the woman’s uterus.
Sperm Freezing (Cryopreservation)
The process for freezing sperm is much simpler than egg freezing. In order to freeze sperm a man must provide a semen sample via masturbation or through a technique called testicular sperm extraction (TESE) which is a medical procedure that extracts the semen manually. The sperm is then frozen via a process called vitrification and stored for later use.