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New ovarian stimulation technique offers more cancer patients the chance to preserve their fertility
Date:7/7/2008

in triggering the end of the luteal phase and the recruitment of a new cohort of follicles. The number of oocytes obtained after stimulation in the luteal phase was slightly but not significantly lower than those obtained after stimulation in the proliferative phase. However the oocyte quality was the same in both groups. This pilot study demonstrates for the first time that mature oocytes can be obtained before cancer therapy within a time frame of two weeks.

"This new protocol would enable patients with cancers such as breast cancer and Hodgkin lymphoma to have ovarian stimulation and oocyte collection. Waiting for two weeks before they start cancer treatment is acceptable for most patients while this process happens. For breast cancer patients, this technique can be combined with the anti-oestrogen drug letrozole. Furthermore, this protocol allows the combination of freezing and storing both ovarian tissue and oocytes, which results in the women having a higher chance of achieving pregnancy if their cancer treatment causes ovarian failure."

Dr von Wolff said information about these new techniques needed to be disseminated to oncologists so that they were aware of the options available to their patients to help them preserve their fertility. National networks of specialised centres capable of carrying out these techniques should be established, he concluded.


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Contact: Emma Mason
wordmason@mac.com
34-932-308-810
European Society for Human Reproduction and Embryology
Source:Eurekalert

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