Far too often, cancer patients are unaware of the future fertility problems they may encounter after their treatments and surgeries. Encouraging these difficult conversations in advance can educate and help them understand how their body, specifically their egg and sperm count, may react to such treatments. It might be painful now to ask such questions, but they will be grateful, in the future, as their minds are set at ease when building their families and having children.
Our Cancer Care Teams in the Spokane area are very good at advocating for their patients and patient’s fertility. As a cancer patient, the only thing on your mind is the cancer and treatment of the cancer. The last thing you are thinking about is the future family you are hoping for. Advocate for yourself. Ask about your future fertility. We know these conversations are not easy to talk about but if you can prevent a window from closing, it was then worth asking about. Ask about any possible fertility problems that might take place as early as possible, either before surgery or before treatment starts. You might also want to get a second opinion, or a referral to a fertility or reproductive specialist.
Please know that the Center for Reproductive Health can get patients in for a fertility consult or second opinion, almost next day, after talking with your oncologist. Oncology referrals are first priority with Dr. Robins. He and our office understand that time is precious for our cancer patients. If Dr. Robins recommends egg preservation, typically we can have the patient’s treatment complete in 6 weeks or sooner.
Egg and Sperm Preservation allows patients going through cancer treatments to vitrify their oocytes (freeze their eggs) or sperm prior to cancer treatment – Giving the patient hope for a family in the future.