, Volume 10, Issue 7, pp 433-438
Date: 19 Sep 2008

The valencia programme for fertility preservation

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Abstract

Introduction

Fertility preservation needs have increased dramatically in recent years due to a rising cancer incidence and also a significant increase in survival rates.

Materials and methods

We report on 200 women participating in the Valencia Programme for Fertility Preservation, of whom 55% were breast cancer patients, 25% Hodgkin’s disease patients, and the remaining 20% suffered from other nonmalignant and malignant diseases. Mean age was 28.2 years (11–39). Before patients were submitted to oncological treatment, the right ovarian cortex was extracted by laparoscopy and cryopreserved. Once the patient was free of disease, the right ovarian cortex was thawed and implanted onto the left ovarian medulla (after extraction at the same surgical time of left ovarian cortex).

Results

In 95% of cases, a piece ∼2 × 3 cm was obtained. The procedure did not cause any change in the cancer therapy schedule. Four implants had been performed (all of them in women who underwent chemotherapy prior to ovarian cortex extraction), from which two of the cases achieved ovarian function resumption, in one case a month after the implant and in the other 5.5 months after. The remaining two implanted cases were performed 5 and 6 months prior to the writing of this paper, respectively.

Conclusions

Ovarian tissue cryopreservation is a feasible option to preserve ovarian function and possibly fertility in adolescents and young women at risk of developing premature ovarian failure (POF) due to chemotherapy and/or radiotherapy.