More research, more responsibility: the expansion of duty to warn in cancer patients considering fertility preservation

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Reproductive technology is advancing at a steadfast pace. Researchers are successfully refining options for fertility preservation, to the benefit of the cancer community. Research has consistently shown cancer patients and survivors desire to have risks to fertility and preservation options disclosed, and major campaigns have been undertaken to refer these patients to fertility specialists. However, the decision to pursue fertility preservation is not an isolated judgment. A variety of future decisions may arise for the individual or couple, choices that may not have been relayed during the initial decision-making process. Future decisions include the length of time to continue to store frozen gametes, donating banked gametes to infertile couples, and whether embryos created with one partner would be accepted by a new partner. It is important to continue the advancement of fertility preservation not only in the scientific milieu, but also in addressing a patient's preparedness for long-term decision making.

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