Ovarian Cancer: Fertility Preservation

Depending on the individual case and the therapies involved, the chances for ovarian cancer survivors to conceive after treatment can be limited. But thanks to our collaboration with UAB Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility Services, women have several options to preserve or restore their fertility, so that they may start a family after they complete their cancer treatment. These options include:

  • In vitro fertilization (IVF) and embryo freezing: This method combines fertility medication with retrieval of the eggs prior to chemotherapy or radiation. The eggs are then fertilized through IVF, and the embryos are frozen for later use. While this is the most established and successful option, it does require precise timing, expense, and the availability of sperm.
  • IVF and egg freezing: This option is available for women who may not have a partner. The eggs are harvested and frozen without being fertilized in the hopes of later using them for IVF.
  • Ovarian tissue freezing: This experimental treatment option involves the retrieval of ovarian tissue for women who want a solution that does not require the time and hormone treatments necessary with IVF. The tissue is frozen and stored for reimplantation in the ovary after cancer treatment is complete, with the goal of restoring normal hormone production.

Why UAB

Patients with ovarian cancer are treated at the UAB Women & Infants Center, a beautiful and modern clinical, chemo infusion, and inpatient facility designed and dedicated specifically for women’s health. Our experience is evident in our statistics: From 2010 to 2016 alone, we treated more than 2,880 patients with ovarian cancer, and we have enrolled some 300 patients in clinical trials. Our physicians have access to a large portfolio of research studies, which gives many patients the opportunity to receive cutting-edge treatments often not available at other medical centers.

UAB Medicine is nationally and internationally renowned for our care of patients with ovarian cancer. We were one of only five institutions to be awarded a Specialized Program of Research Excellence (SPORE) in ovarian cancer by the National Institutes of Health. Coupled with the region’s only Comprehensive Cancer Center, as designated by the National Cancer Institute, our patients have access to the most advanced cancer treatments and research available. And through our Lynne Cohen Preventive Care Program for Women's Cancer, we also offer comprehensive risk assessments and prevention strategies for ovarian, breast, and uterine cancer, arming women with knowledge to make informed decisions about their future risk and care options. We are dedicated to improving treatments and ultimately finding a cure for women’s cancers.

CARE PROVIDERS

Related Conditions

This procedure may be used to treat or diagnose several different conditions. We have listed some of these conditions below for your convenience. Please note that this is not a comprehensive list and may vary depending on your specific diagnosis.

CLINICAL TRIALS

UAB is an active participant in research and clinical trials for the diagnosis and treatment of ovarian cancer. We encourage you to speak to your physician about research and clinical trial options and browse the link below for more information.

View Clinical Trials