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How conventional cancer treatments are harmful to women's fertility

Conventional medicine

(NaturalNews) When you are diagnosed with cancer at a childbearing age, your ability to have children may be at risk. While this may be the least of your concerns when something as dramatic as cancer turns your life upside down, it is worth thinking about.

Whether you already have children or not, conventional cancer treatments can negatively affect a women's, and men's, fertility, and ruin the thought of becoming a parent or having another child. While it is important to put all your energy into getting better and fighting cancer, it is worth considering ways of preserving your fertility before starting conventional cancer treatments.

How conventional cancer treatments harm fertility

It is known that chemotherapy, radiotherapy, surgery on your reproductive organs, and hormone therapy can all negatively affect fertility. The effects can be temporary or permanent.

It is uncertain to know up front what the consequences on fertility are going to be. Many factors – such as age, sex, length of treatment, type of cancer – will all play an important role.

Conventional treatments can stop the production of certain hormones, damage the lining of the womb, or cause early menopause, which can all make becoming pregnant after cancer treatment impossible.

If you or someone you love is facing cancer, make sure to watch the powerful series "The Truth About Cancer," here. Harmful chemotherapy and radiation aren't the only ways to beat this dreadful disease.

Atlanta fertility clinic 'fast-tracks' cancer patients

While it is not easy to preserve a woman's fertility, an Atlanta medical facility is successfully helping women around the world make their dream of motherhood come true after they received cancer treatment.

Marisa Topping of Smyrna is one of these women. She was 38 when she got the news she had breast cancer. At that time, she and her husband Paul were trying to have a baby brother or sister for their daughter Pearl.

"Having the breast cancer and then learning that the treatment plan might include chemotherapy, we weren't sure if I would have any trouble getting pregnant afterward," she said.

Luckily for the couple, their doctor referred them to Dr. Lisa Hasty, a fertility specialist and founder of the Atlanta Center for Reproductive Medicine (ACRM).

As soon as Marisa's lump was removed, but before getting chemotherapy, Hasty put her on a fast-track. Her ovaries were stimulated and Hasty extracted her eggs and froze the couple's embryos.

"We really had to move pretty quickly because they were ready to begin her treatment," Hasty said.

Giving birth to healthy children after therapy

After preserving the embryos, Marisa went through several chemo and radiation sessions. After she completed her therapy, two healthy embryos that never came in contact with chemotherapy drugs or radiation, were implanted in Marisa's womb.

Shortly after, the couple received the news they were going to have twins. Marisa, now 40, is cancer-free and said her two-year old twins Declan and Cora have made her family complete.

"Having this option," she said, "just kind of kept our lives going the way we had imagined it would go."

The Atlanta Center for Reproductive Medicine recently teamed up with the Colorado Center for Reproductive Medicine, which specializes in more advanced techniques and testing on cells of cancer patients.

"So we're hoping that's going to raise success rates by another five to ten percentage points, which means a lot more babies," said Hasty.

Sources for this article include:




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