Pre-treatment fertility preservation and post-treatment reproduction in long-term survivors of adolescent and young adult (AYA) cancer.



To describe recall of fertility-related consultations and cryopreservation and to examine reproductive goals and reproduction post-treatment in long-term survivors of adolescent and young adult (AYA) (age, 18-39 years) cancer.


This study included n = 1457 male and n = 2112 female long-term survivors (Mage = 43-45 years; 5-22 years from diagnosis) who provided self-report. Clinical data were supplied by the Netherlands Cancer Registry.


Cryopreservation in men varied by patient/clinical factors and was very low in women, but data of more recently treated females are needed. Utilizing cryopreserved material through ART was rare, which questions its cost-effectiveness, but it may enhance survivors' well-being.


Most male survivors (72.7%) recalled fertility-related consultations and 22.6% completed sperm cryopreservation. Younger age (OR = 2.8; 95%CI [2.2-3.6]), not having children (OR = 5.0; 95%CI [3.2-7.7]), testicular cancer or lymphoma/leukemia (OR = 2.8/2.5 relative to "others"), and more intense treatments (OR = 1.5; 95%CI [1.1-2.0]) were associated with higher cryopreservation rates. Time since diagnosis had no effect. Of men who cryopreserved, 12.1% utilized assisted reproductive technologies (ART). Most men (88.5%) felt their diagnosis did not affect their reproductive goals, but 7.6% wanted no (additional) children due to cancer. Half of female survivors (55.4%; n = 1171) recalled fertility-related consultations. Rates of cryopreservation were very low (3.6%), but increased after 2013 when oocyte cryopreservation became non-experimental. Of women who cryopreserved, 13.2% successfully utilized ART. Most women (74.8%) experienced no effects of cancer on reproductive goals, but 17.8% wanted no (additional) children due to cancer.


The extent to which cryopreservation positively affects survivors' well-being remains to be tested. Moreover, effects of cancer on reproductive goals require further attention, especially in women who refrain from having children due to cancer.

More about this publication

Journal of cancer survivorship : research and practice
  • Publication date 06-02-2024

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