Testicular cancer usually strikes men between 20 and 34 years old. Advances in chemotherapy and radiotherapy have led to an improved survival rate from the cancer, but since men who get the disease are so young, concern about the effect of the cancer and its treatment on fertility remains.
While some studies have suggested treatment reduces fertility, others have found fertility rates unchanged. These conflicting results suggested the need for more study. Researchers looked at fertility rates among about 450 French men who were treated for testicular cancer between 1979 and 1999. Prior to their diagnosis, about 91 percent of the men had been able to successfully get their partners pregnant. After treatment, that number fell to about 67 percent. Radiotherapy was significantly more likely to cause fertility problems than chemotherapy alone.
AdvertisementBased on their findings, researchers suggest men diagnosed with testicular cancer take steps prior to treatment to ensure their future ability to father children. Researchers suggest to preserve future fertility, semen cryopreservation and sperm banking before treatment must be strongly recommended for men who are diagnosed with [testicular cancer].