This Unit aims to offer counselling to those patients who have suffered a cancer about their possibilities to have a child once the oncological treatment is finished.
A multidisciplinary committee evaluates each case, and emits a resolution on the type of fertility treatment to be followed and the best moment to start it.
Dr. Carles Catllà, a gynaecologist and member of this Unit, says: “many of these women will be able to have a child if they have already successfully completed chemo, radiotherapy or surgery, but it is imperative that their case is studied by a multidisciplinary team like ours. Only like this, we can state that being a mother after a cancer is safe. “
By now, 89% of the patients evaluated by Institut Marquès’s specialised Unit were considered fit to initiate a reproductive process. Of these, 82% have achieved a pregnancy through different treatments and 7 out of 10 have become mothers in less than two years after the first consultation.
The experts of Institut Marquès, who have already been following up for two years the oncological patients who got pregnant, have observed this. All of them are still healthy, that is, none have had a recurrence of the disease.
The reproductive treatments followed by these patients have been In Vitro Fertilization (3’9%), Embryo Adoption (11.7%) and Egg Donation (84%). Only 10% of the women who started a fertility treatment had vitrified their eggs before starting the oncological treatment.
The average age of these patients is 40 years old, and the most common type of cancer is breast cancer (35%), followed by hematologic ones such as leukaemia or lymphoma (29%) and ovarian cancer (14%). An average of 8 years since they were diagnosed of cancer had elapsed at the time they seek advice to be mothers.
Patients who were not able to start the reproductive process (10% of the evaluated women) were basically discouraged because they had not yet completed their oncological treatment, because of their age (women older than 50 years old) or due to a problem of morbid obesity.
If the Unit denies reproductive treatment, patients will be informed of the diagnostic tests or oncological treatments to be followed before being re-evaluated by the committee.