Cancer survivors and infertility: a review of a new problem and novel answers

J Support Oncol. 2006 Apr;4(4):171-8.


Improvements in cancer treatment have changed the way in which cancer is viewed and experienced. However, these same treatments have led to numerous early and late effects, including the loss of fertility. Infertility can influence the biologic and psychologic health of both male and female survivors. Reproductive science can now offer methods to address this concern and provide promising new approaches that may eliminate or mitigate this treatment-related outcome. For current and future reproductive options to serve the needs of survivors more fully, health providers must understand the complexities of infertility as well as their role in delivering answers their patients require. This review will discuss what is known about the causes and experience of infertility among cancer survivors as well as the forms of fertility preservation available.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Agents / adverse effects*
  • Female
  • Fertility* / drug effects
  • Fertility* / radiation effects
  • Humans
  • Infertility / etiology*
  • Infertility / psychology
  • Infertility / therapy
  • Male
  • Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Radiotherapy / adverse effects
  • Reproductive Techniques, Assisted / trends*
  • Semen Preservation / methods
  • Survivors*


  • Antineoplastic Agents