Full-text resources of PSJD and other databases are now available in the new Library of Science.
Visit https://bibliotekanauki.pl


Preferences help
enabled [disable] Abstract
Number of results


2021 | 11 | 2 | 45-48

Article title

On Becoming a Mother After Cancer Survival: A Comprehensive Literature Review


Title variants

Languages of publication



Problem identification: The desire for motherhood is one of the top priorities for most female young cancer survivors. The risk of infertility after cancer therapy is an important concern with several physical and emotional consequences. This comprehensive literature review aims to summarize and contextualize recent research that has been carried out on female fertility after cancer, suggesting future research and clinical directions. Literature search: Searches included the keywords “cancer”, “female”, “adults”, and “fertility”. Studies were selected if focused on infertility issues in female cancer survivors. Data synthesis: Eight themes were identified: the effects of anticancer treatments on fertility; fertility preservation methods; international recommendations regarding infertility risk; health professionals’ attitudes towards fertility preservation; patient’s concerns regarding the risk of infertility; patients' information needs; and the impact of the risk of infertility in patient’s quality of life. Conclusions: Psycho-oncologists should be integrated in the oncofertility teams to assess patients’ needs before cancer treatment initiation.












Physical description


  • Center for Health Technology and Services Research (CINTESIS.UA), Department of Education and Psychology, University of Aveiro, Portugal
  • Breast Cancer Clinic/Psycho‐Oncology Service, Francisco Gentil Portuguese Institute of Oncology of Porto, Porto, Portugal
  • Health & Family Research Group, School of Psychology, University of Minho, Braga, Portugal. Research Center in Psychology (CIPsi), School of Psychology, University of Minho, Braga, Portugal


  • 1. Assi J, Santos J, Bonetti T et al. Psychosocial benefits of fertility preservation for young cancer patients. J Assist Reprod Genet. 2018; 35(4): 601-6. http://doi.org/10.1007/s10815-018-1131-7.
  • 2. Goeckenjan M, Freis A, Glaß K et al. Motherhood after cancer: fertility and utilization of fertility-preservation methods. Arch Gynecol Obstet. 2020; 301(6): 1579-88. http://doi.org/10.1007/s00404-020-05563-w.
  • 3. Fidler MM, Gupta S, Soerjomataram I et al. Cancer incidence and mortality among young adults aged 20–39 years worldwide in 2012: a population-based study. Lancet Oncol. 2017; 18(12): 1579-89. http://doi.org/10.1016/s1470-2045(17)30677-0.
  • 4. Allemani C, Matsuda T, Di Carlo V et al. Global surveillance of trends in cancer survival 2000-14 (CONCO RD-3): analysis of individual records for 37 513 025 patients diagnosed with one of 18 cancers from 322 population-based registries in 71 countries. Lancet. 2018; 391(10125): 1023-75. http://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(17)33326-3.
  • 5. Anderson RA, Brewster DH, Wood R et al. The impact of cancer on subsequent chance of pregnancy: a population-based analysis. Hum Reprod. 2018; 33(7): 1281-90. http://doi.org/10.1093/humrep/dey216.
  • 6. Abdel-Razeq HN, Mansour RA, Ammar KS et al. Amenorrhea, fertility preservation, and counseling among young women treated with anthracyclines and taxanes for early-stage breast cancer, a retrospective study. Medicine. 2020; 99(11): e19566. http://doi.org/10.1097/MD.0000000000019566.
  • 7. La Rosa VL, Shah M, Kahramanoglu I et al. Quality of life and fertility preservation counseling for women with gynecological cancer: an integrated psychological and clinical perspective. J Psychosom Obstet Gynaecol. 2020; 41(2): 86-92. http://doi.org/10.1080/0167482X.2019.1648424.
  • 8. Gorman JR, Julian AK, Roberts SA et al. Developing a post-treatment survivorship care plan to help breast cancer survivors understand their fertility. Support Care Cancer. 2018; 26(2): 589-95. http://doi.org/10.1007/s00520-017-3871-9.
  • 9. Woodruff TK. The Oncofertility Consortium – addressing fertility in young people with cancer. Nat Rev Clin Oncol. 2010; 7(8): 466-75. http://doi.org/10.1038/nrclinonc.2010.81.
  • 10. Loren AW, Mangu PB, Beck LN et al. Fertility preservation for patients with cancer: American Society of Clinical Oncology clinical practice guideline update. J Clin Oncol. 2013; 31(19): 2500-10. http://doi.org/10.1200/JCO.2013.49.2678.
  • 11. Oktay K, Harvey BE, Partridge AH et al. Fertility Preservation in Patients With Cancer: ASCO Clinical Practice Guideline Update. J Clin Oncol. 2018; 36(19): 1994-2001. http://doi.org/10.1200/JCO .2018.78.1914.
  • 12. Logan S, Perz J, Ussher J et al. Clinician provision of oncofertility support in cancer patients of a reproductive age: A systematic review. Psychooncology. 2018; 27(3): 748-56. http://doi.org/10.1002/pon.4518 .
  • 13. Alvarez RM, Ramanathan P. Fertility preservation in female oncology patients: the influence of the type of cancer on ovarian stimulation response. Hum Reprod. 2018; 33(11): 2051-9. http://doi.org/10.1093/humrep/dew158.
  • 14. Burgos N, Cintron D, Latortue-Albino P et al. Estrogen-based hormone therapy in women with primary ovarian insufficiency: a systematic review. Endocrine. 2017; 58(3): 413-25. http://doi.org/10.1007/s12020-017-1435-x.
  • 15. Stumpf U, Kostev K, Siebenbürger G et al. Influence of chemotherapy and endocrine treatment on fractures in postmenopausal women with breast cancer – a retrospective cohort study. J Bone Oncol. 2020; 22: 100292. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.jbo.2020.100292.
  • 16. Spears N, Lopes F, Stefansdottir A et al. Ovarian damage from chemotherapy and current approaches to its protection. Hum Reprod Update. 2019; 25(6): 673-93. http://doi.org/10.1093/humupd/dmz027.
  • 17. Vassilakopoulou M, Boostandoost E, Papaxoinis G et al. Anticancer treatment and fertility: Effect of therapeutic modalities on reproductive system and functions. Crit Rev Oncol Hematol. 2016; 97: 328-34. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.critrevonc.2015.08.002.
  • 18. Ter Welle-Butalid MEE, Vriens IJHI, Derhaag JGJ et al. Counseling young women with early breast cancer on fertility preservation. J Assist Reprod Genet. 2019; 36(12): 2593-604. http://doi.org/10.1007/s10815-019-01615-6.
  • 19. Davies C, Pan H, Godwin J et al. Long-term effects of continuing adjuvant tamoxifen to 10 years versus stopping at 5 years after diagnosis of oestrogen receptor-positive breast cancer: ATLAS, a randomised trial. Lancet. 2013; 381(9869): 805-16. http://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(12)61963-1.
  • 20. Ben Charif A, Bouhnik AD, Rey D et al. Satisfaction with fertility– and sexuality-related information in young women with breast cancer – ELIPPSE40 cohort. BMC Cancer. 2015; 15: 572. http://doi.org/10.1186/s12885-015-1542-0.
  • 21. Iqbal J, Amir E, Rochon PA et al. Association of the timing of pregnancy with survival in women with breast cancer. JAMA Oncol. 2017; 3(5): 659-65. http://doi.org/10.1001/jamaoncol.2017.0248.
  • 22. Jardim FA, Lopes-Júnior LC , Nascimento LC et al. Fertility-related concerns and uncertainties in adolescent and young adult childhood cancer survivors. J Adolesc Young Adult Oncol. 2021; 10(1): 85-91. http://doi.org/10.1089/jayao.2020.0058.
  • 23. Hartnett KP, Mertens AC , Kramer MR et al. Pregnancy after cancer: does timing of conception affect infant health? Cancer. 2018; 124(22): 4401-7. http://doi.org/10.1002/cncr.31732.
  • 24. Rajabi Z, Aliakbari F, Yazdekhasti H. Female Fertility Preservation, Clinical and Experimental Options. J Reprod Infertil. 2018; 19(3): 125-32.
  • 25. Lambertini M, Peccatori FA, Demeestere I et al. Fertility preservation and post-treatment pregnancies in post-pubertal cancer patients: ESMO Clinical Practice Guidelines. Ann Oncol. 2020; 31(12): 1664-78. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.annonc.2020.09.006.
  • 26. Angarita AM, Johnson CA , Fader AN et al. Fertility Preservation: A Key Survivorship Issue for Young Women with Cancer. Front Oncol. 2016; 6: 102. http://doi.org/10.3389/fonc.2016.00102.
  • 27. Mahey R, Kandpal S, Gupta M et al. Knowledge and awareness about fertility preservation among female patients with cancer: a cross-sectional study. Obstet Gynecol Sci. 2020; 63(4): 480-9. http://doi.org/10.5468/ogs.20003.
  • 28. Vindrola-Padros C, Dyer KE, Cyrus J et al. Healthcare professionals’ views on discussing fertility preservation with young cancer patients: a mixed method systematic review of the literature. Psychooncology. 2017; 26(1): 4-14. http://doi.org/10.1002/pon.4092.
  • 29. Zhang H, Wang G, Jiang B et al. The Knowledge, Attitude, and Self-Reported Behaviors of Oncology Physicians Regarding Fertility Preservation in Adult Cancer Patients. J Cancer Educ. 2020; 35(6): 1119-27. http://doi.org/10.1007/s13187-019-01567-6.
  • 30. Melo C, Fonseca A, Silva C et al. Portuguese oncologists’ practices regarding female fertility preservation: Which barriers most relate to these practices? Eur J Cancer Care. 2018; 27(2): e12812. http://doi.org/10.1111/ecc.12812.
  • 31. Norton W, Wright E. Barriers and Facilitators to Fertility-Related Discussions with Teenagers and Young Adults with Cancer: Nurses’ Experiences. J Adolesc Young Adult Oncol. 2020; 9(4): 481-9. http://doi.org/10.1089/jayao.2019.0092.
  • 32. Benedict C, Nieh JL, Hahn AL et al. “Looking at future cancer survivors, give them a roadmap”: addressing fertility and family-building topics in post-treatment cancer survivorship care. Support Care Cancer. 2021; 29(4): 2203-13. http://doi.org/10.1007/s00520-020-05731-3.
  • 33. Logan S, Anazodo A. The psychological importance of fertility preservation counseling and support for cancer patients. Acta Obstet Gynecol Scand. 2019; 98(5): 583-97. http://doi.org/10.1111/aogs.13562.
  • 34. Wettergren L, Ljungman L, Micaux Obol C et al. Sexual dysfunction and fertility-related distress in young adults with cancer over 5 years following diagnosis: study protocol of the Fex-Can Cohort study. BMC Cancer. 2020; 20(1): 722. http://doi.org/10.1186/s12885-020-07175-8.
  • 35. Ussher JM, Perz J; Australian Cancer and Fertility Study Team (AC FST). Threat of biographical disruption: the gendered construction and experience of infertility following cancer for women and men. BMC Cancer. 2018; 18(1): 250. http://doi.org/10.1186/s12885-018-4172-5.
  • 36. Sobota A, Ozakinci G. Determinants of fertility issues experienced by young women diagnosed with breast or gynaecological cancer – a quantitative, cross-cultural study. BMC Cancer. 2018; 18(1): 874. http://doi.org/10.1186/s12885-018-4766-y.
  • 37. Senkus E, Gomez H, Dirix L et al. Attitudes of young patients with breast cancer toward fertility loss related to adjuvant systemic therapies. EORTC study 10002 BIG 3-98. Psychooncology. 2014; 23(2): 173-82. http://doi.org/10.1002/pon.3384.
  • 38. Hawkey AJ, Ussher JM, Perz J et al. The impact of cancer-related fertility concerns on current and future couple relationships: People with cancer and partner perspectives. Eur J Cancer Care. 2021; 30(1): e13348. http://doi.org/10.1111/ecc.13348.
  • 39. Ljungman L, Ahlgren J, Petersson LM et al. Sexual dysfunction and reproductive concerns in young women with breast cancer: Type, prevalence, and predictors of problems. Psychooncology. 2018; 27(12): 2770-7. http://doi.org/10.1002/pon.4886.
  • 40. Garg R, Rebić N, De Vera MA. Information needs about cancer treatment, fertility, and pregnancy: qualitative descriptive study of reddit threads. JMIR Cancer. 2020; 6(2): e17771. http://doi.org/10.2196/17771.
  • 41. Dagan E, Modiano-Gattegno S, Birenbaum-Carmeli D. “My choice”: breast cancer patients recollect doctors fertility preservation recommendations. Support Care Cancer. 2017; 25(8): 2421-8. http://doi.org/10.1007/s00520-017-3648-1.
  • 42. Armuand G, Wettergren L, Nilsson J et al. Threatened fertility: A longitudinal study exploring experiences of fertility and having children after cancer treatment. Eur J Cancer Care. 2018; 27(2): e12798. http://doi.org/10.1111/ecc.12798.
  • 43. Benedict C, Thom B, Friedman DN et al. Fertility information needs and concerns post-treatment contribute to lowered quality of life among young adult female cancer survivors. Support Care Cancer. 2018; 26(7): 2209-15. http://doi.org/10.1007/s00520-017-4006-z.

Document Type


Publication order reference


YADDA identifier

JavaScript is turned off in your web browser. Turn it on to take full advantage of this site, then refresh the page.