Can I preserve my fertility?
Fertility preservation is an important issue to many women, especially young women diagnosed with breast cancer. There is usually time between a diagnosis and chemotherapy where egg harvesting is possible. Embryo freezing, where eggs are fertilized using a partner's or donor's sperm, is the most effective preservation technique. Egg freezing is another possibility for one who wants to retain the option to have the biological children of a future partner. However, pregnancy rates are low – “approximately 3% of eggs stored result in pregnancies. It is still important to discuss all options with both your physician and a fertility specialist. While fertility preservation is a highly viable option which can often lessen the effects of a loss of fertility on a woman, it is also expensive and is not often covered by insurance.
You can learn more about fertility options and financial assistance through LIVESTRONG’s fertility services and the Oncofertility Consortium at Northwestern University.