Assessing the Reproductive Concerns of Children and Adolescents with Cancer: Challenges and Potential Solutions

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Infertility is often an expected side effect of cancer treatment, although the idea of fertility and sterility may be difficult for the child or adolescent patient to comprehend. Several established fertility preservation options exist for males and females, such as cryopreservation of sperm or embryos. Experimental therapies, which require institutional review board approval, are also being tested. While the science of fertility preservation for adolescents with cancer is advancing, the social science research in this area is lacking. Specifically, there are only a small number of studies about the psychological reproductive concerns in the pediatric oncology population. These studies have provided groundbreaking information for future research, but also illustrate the challenges in conducting research in this area. This article comments on those challenges and, when possible, presents solutions for confronting them.

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Journal of Adolescent and Young Adult Oncology, v. 1, issue 1, p. 31-35

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