Children and young people

Children and adoles­cents childhood cancer

Since the 1970s, survival rates for girls and boys with malignant diseases have steadily improved.

Fertility is impaired in up to one third of girls and boys after chemo­ther­apy and/or radio­ther­apy, and in over two thirds after a bone marrow trans­plant. Irra­di­ation of the brain can lead to cessation of egg mat­ur­a­tion or sperm pro­duc­tion. Irra­di­ation of the pelvis with more than 14 Gy can result in impaired uterine function, which increases the risk of pregnancy complications.

The coun­selling interview includes inform­a­tion about the risk of a fertility disorder as well as the chances and risks of fertility-pre­serving measures. Adoles­cent patients should make a joint decision with their parents. The pos­sib­il­ity of later adoption in the event of a complete loss of fertility should also be mentioned in the coun­selling interview. Chemo­ther­apy and radio­ther­apy do not increase the risk for a mal­form­a­tion in children born later on.

In order to support the patient in the decision-making regarding fertility-pre­serving measures we recomend the “Decision Aid” linked here. It is a digital decision aid developed by psy­cho­lo­gists, psy­cho­ther­ap­ists and repro­duct­ive physicians.

You can find more inform­a­tion in the inform­a­tion brochure TimeTrip

Detailed inform­a­tion and a bib­li­o­graphy can be found in the Fer­ti­PRO­TEKT booklet “Indika­tion und Durch­führung fer­til­ität­s­pro­tekt­iver Maßnahmen bei onko­lo­gis­chen und nicht-onko­lo­gis­chen Erkrankun­gen”, 2nd revised edition 2020, which was written by members of the Fer­ti­PRO­TEKT Netzwerk e.V. and is available free of charge (in German).