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Oncofertility

Learn more about how oncofertility can help you fulfill the dream of parenthood

Our Indianapolis fertility center offers fertility preservation services to help cancer patients preserve their fertility. Oncofertility is a medical field that brings together reproductive medicine and oncology. This field involves patients working with a fertility specialist and an oncologist to ensure their fertility preservation and cancer treatment needs are being met.

Oncofertility for those with ovaries

The reproductive system of people with ovaries might experience negative effects during radiation, chemotherapy or surgery for cancer. There are two primary fertility preservation options that these patients can use before beginning cancer treatment.

Egg freezing. Egg freezing is a popular treatment for those who are not yet with the person they’d like to have children with. This process involves a doctor collecting multiple healthy eggs from a patient before they start treatment for cancer. This can be especially helpful, as many cancer treatments harm the eggs.

After the egg retrieval, an embryologist flash freezes the eggs with a safe technology called vitrification. We then store the eggs in a lab.

When the person is ready to become pregnant, we thaw the eggs and fertilize them with sperm from the person’s partner or chosen donor. The doctor then transfers one of the resulting embryos into the patient’s uterus or the uterus of a gestational surrogate.

Embryo freezing. Those in a relationship with the person they’d like to have children with can utilize embryo freezing before starting cancer treatments. Following the collection of the person’s eggs, an embryologist fertilizes them with sperm from the person’s partner or donor. The embryologist then flash freezes the resulting embryos using vitrification.

When the person is ready to become pregnant, an embryologist thaws an embryo. A doctor at our Indianapolis fertility center then transfers the embryo into the uterus of the patient or their gestational surrogate.

Oncofertility is helping those with ovaries fulfill the dream of parenthood after finishing cancer treatments.

Fertility preservation for people with testes

Cancer patients with testes can experience harm to their reproductive system during cancer treatments. This can result in issues with sperm production. Our Indianapolis fertility center can help these patients preserve their fertility by freezing their sperm.

Sperm freezing involves the patient providing one or more semen samples that an andrologist then washes, prepares and freezes.

When the patient is ready to start a family, we thaw the semen sample. The patient can then use the sample as part of an intrauterine insemination (IUI) or in vitro fertilization (IVF) cycle.

  • During IUI, a doctor uses a catheter to place the patient’s sperm into the uterus of their partner.
  • If the patients require IVF, an embryologist uses the patient’s sperm to fertilize eggs from their partner or an egg donor. A doctor then transfers a resulting embryo into the uterus of the patient’s partner or gestational surrogate.

The team at our clinic understands what a challenge it can be to need cancer treatments at any time, but especially before you’re ready to build a family. We are by the patient’s side every step of this journey, from preserving their fertility to eventually taking home a healthy baby. Contact us for more information about oncofertility or to schedule an appointment.

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