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62
SIDE EFFECTS AND SYMPTOM MANAGEMENT /// CHAPTER 40
How will I know if I'm fertile after
treatment?
The restarting of your periods is NOT a perfect indication
of fertility.
» You can get pregnant before your periods restart.
» Your periods can restart and you may actually be
infertile.
What we do:
» Yearly hormone level checks. We will monitor your
fertility status after you finish treatment.
» Reproductive endocrinologist visit. This specialist
can help you get more detailed information about your
fertility status following treatment. This may include
an ultrasound to look at your ovaries.
Remember: Regardless of your fertility status after
treatment, we recommend safe sex practices - using
a condom and birth control. This will protect you from
infections and prevent you from becoming a parent before
you are ready.
What do I do if I stored oocytes,
embryos or ovarian tissue?
When you are ready to start a family, meet with a
reproductive endocrinologist to discuss starting a family
using your stored oocytes, embryos or ovarian tissue.
» If you stored oocytes, embryos or ovarian tissue, it is
important to pay your annual storage fees on time.
You will receive a bill from your fertility bank every
year.
» If you cannot afford to pay your bill, please call
the fertility bank and discuss payment plans. Your
navigator may also be able to help you find other
financial assistance programs.
Will a child conceived after my
treatment be healthy?
There is no clear evidence that children conceived after
cancer treatment are at an increased risk for birth defects
or other health problems.
» You cannot directly transmit your cancer to your child.
» However, some cancers are hereditary or passed down
through a predisposition in your genes from parents
to children. Ask your doctor if you have a hereditary
cancer. You can then meet with a genetics counselor
to learn how this may affect the health of your child.
What if I did not store oocytes,
embryos, or ovarian tissue?
Talk to your provider or our fertility team to help assess
your ovarian reserve and fertility status, as well as how
healthy your body is to carry a pregnancy. If you have not
entered early menopause, you may still be fertile and able
to have biologically-related children.
» If there are concerns that you are fertile, but still
at risk for an early menopause, it may be possible
to collect and store oocytes or embryos after you
finish treatment. You can meet with a reproductive
endocrinologist to learn more and discuss your
choices.
» If you are unable to have a biologically-related child
due to the treatment you received or another reason,
there are other ways to become a parent, including
adoption. More information about these options is
available.
This can be an uncomfortable topic to talk about with your
healthcare team. Whether or not you want children or to
grow your family is a very personal matter. Remember that
your care team understands the importance of addressing
these issues with you and your family and has your best
interest in mind. They want to be able to provide you with
all of your options so that you can make an informed
decision that you feel good about. Discussing family
planning, sex and your ovaries allows the providers to help
take care of not just your physical self but your emotional
self as well.
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What Do I Do Now?

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of What Do I Do Now?

Contents
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