Chemotherapy and infertility
While infertility is in no way a definite result of chemotherapy, it is a possibility. Whether or not chemotherapy leads to infertility can depend on a variety of factors, including the patient’s age and the type of chemotherapy drug being used. And, sometimes, it simply comes down to chance. There are certain chemotherapy drugs that are more or less likely to lead to infertility, so make sure you discuss it with your physician if you hope to become pregnant following treatment. In the case that infertility does not occur, doctors still advise women not to become pregnant for at least 6 months after treatment. This is because chemotherapy could damage eggs in the body during treatment, which can potentially lead to miscarriages or genetic problems for the child.
Given that chemotherapy is typically used to treat breast cancer, it’s important for women to think about their options to keep the possibility of having children post-treatment open, if that’s something they desire to do. This is especially important because, along with potentially damaging the eggs in the body, chemotherapy can cause early menopause in some women. But, now more than ever, there’s ways to increase the likelihood of successful pregnancies even after undergoing chemotherapy.