Health Watch - Family Matters: Having Kids After Cancer

Health Watch is a Public Service of the Office of News and Publications and is intended to provide general information only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.


The decision to start a family – or not to start one – may involve medical considerations. This week on Health Watch, we’ll look at some of the issues that can affect fertility, birth and starting a family. Even if family plans are far in the future, men diagnosed with cancer have to make some family-related decisions.

Men diagnosed with testicular cancer may have sperm frozen before they undergo treatment, but all men diagnosed with cancer may want to consider this. Dr. Victor Beshay, a fertility specialist at UT Southwestern Medical Center, says some kinds of chemotherapy and radiation treatment can cause permanent infertility. That means men who may want to have children someday should consider seeing a fertility specialist before treatment begins. This includes teenage boys who may not even be thinking that far into their future. Couples can conceive with frozen sperm even years later.

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May 2011


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