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Planned and unplanned pregnancies in breast cancer survivors

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Julia Kopeika, Mahua Bhaduri, Anija Kugadas, Nivedita Reddy, Amanda Shewbridge, Deborah Mukherji, Ines Sandri, Janine Mansi

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)75-80
Number of pages6
JournalBREAST
Volume46
Early online date8 May 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2019

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Abstract

Background: Nearly 20% of women presenting with breast cancer in the UK are of reproductive age. Theaim of our study was to assess fertility outcome in relation to intent to conceive in patients who had completed breast cancer treatment.Methods:Between July 2011 and December 2013, women, aged less than 43 years at the time of diagnosis, were asked during their follow-up in breast cancer clinic, to complete a questionnaire on intentions to conceive and pregnancy outcome.Results:A total of 175 women completed the questionnaire at a median time of 6 years from time of diagnosis. Their median age at the time of diagnosis was 37 years and at the time of the survey was 43 years. At the time of the survey, 42% (72/175) had completed their family, 41% (72/175) reported that they would like to have children and 4% (7/175) did not wish to have children. Twenty-seven respondents had actively tried to conceive, and of those 13 (48%) had a live birth. There were 12 unintended pregnancies;the majority of which were terminated (58% (7/12)) with only 3 live births. Among those who did not wish to conceive, only 32% (36/111) reported using contraception.Conclusion:This is a retrospective study investigating menstrual function, contraceptive methods and fertility outcomes of young breast cancer survivors. This study highlights the need for healthcare professionals to provide long-term contraceptive advice to women who do not wish to conceive.

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