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ABVD and BEACOPP regimens’ effects on fertility in young males with Hodgkin lymphoma

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Mohammad S. Ali Amin, Oliver Brunckhorst, Charles Scott, David Wrench, Mary Gleeson, Majid Kazmi, Kamran Ahmed

Original languageEnglish
JournalClinical & Translational Oncology
E-pub ahead of print17 Sep 2020


King's Authors


Purpose: Considering the increased cancer patient survivorship, the focus is now on addressing the impacts of treatment on quality of life. In young people, altered reproductive function is a major issue and its effects in young males are largely neglected by novel research. To improve clinician awareness, we systematically reviewed side effects of chemotherapy for Hodgkin lymphoma (HL) in young males. Methods: The review was prospectively registered (PROSPERO N. CRD42019122868). Three databases (Medline via PUBMED, SCOPUS, and Cochrane Library) were searched for studies featuring males aged 13-51-years who underwent chemotherapy for HL using ABVD (Adriamycin® (doxorubicin), bleomycin, vinblastine, and dacarbazine) or BEACOPP (bleomycin, etoposide, doxorubicin, cyclophosphamide, vincristine, procarbazine, and prednisolone) regimens. These chemotherapy regimens were compared against each other using sperm characteristics, FSH, and inhibin B levels to measure fertility levels. Results: Data were extracted from five studies featuring 1344 patients. 6 months post-ABVD saw marked deterioration in sperm count, further reduced by more cycles (P = 0.05). Patients treated with BEACOPP rather than ABVD were more prone to oligospermia. Receiving fewer cycles of both regimens increased the likelihood of sperm production recovering. Patients treated with 6-8 cycles of BEACOPP did not recover spermiogenesis. Conclusions: ABVD and BEACOPP regimens significantly reduce fertility function to varying effects depending on treatment duration. ABVD temporarily causes significant reductions in male fertility, whereas BEACOPP’s effects are more permanent. Therefore, clinicians should discuss fertility preservation with male patients receiving infertility-inducing gonadotoxic therapy. Further high-quality studies are required to more adequality describe the risk to fertility by chemotherapy.

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