Helping women touched by cancer become mothers.

Achieving a pregnancy after cancer can be difficult for cancer survivors who have undergone chemotherapy, radiation or other gonadtoxic therapies. Published research found on the National Institutes of Health pubmed website, indicate that long-term prognosis is not affected by pregnancy after cancer treatment, even for breast cancer survivors who may have hormone sensitive tumors. Breast-feeding also appears to be feasible other than in the case of those patients whose milk ducts were removed from a double mastectomy. 

There are a few things to keep in mind when trying to achieve a pregnancy: namely avoid alcohol, drugs and limit caffeine intake. Tracking ovulation is also helpful, as you can predict your most fertile days. Here are a few techniques:

  1. An over-the-counter ovulation kit in which you test your urine for a surge in the Luteinizing Hormone (LH). LH triggers ovulation so a surge means ovulation will usually occur within 24 hours.
  2. Measuring basal body temperature (BBT) – BBT is the lowest temperature attained by the body during rest (usually during sleep). A rise in BBT occurs the day after ovulation, so tracking your temperature for a few months can help predict when you ovulate. 18 consecutive days of elevated temperatures means a woman is almost certainly pregnant. It is important to take your temperature first thing upon waking before any physical activity has occurred.
  3. Using a smartphone application to predict ovulation based on factors you enter including simple measures like start date of your last period, length of your period, and average length of your cycle as well as complex measures like BBT.

Visit our acupuncture section to understand how Chinese Medicine may improve your chance at a successful pregnancy. If you do not become pregnant within 12 months of unprotected sex, you may be infertile. Given your cancer history, Fertile Action, recommends an evaluation by a Reproductive Endocrinologist as soon as you desire conception.  Please visit our Fertility Clinics list for compassionate Reproductive Endocrinologists who work with cancer patients and survivors.