Fertility Preservation Toolkit: A Clinician Resource to Assist Clinical Discussion and Decision Making in Pediatric and Adolescent Oncology


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Abstract

Purpose:Fertility preservation (FP) discussions in children with cancer presents unique challenges due to ethical considerations, lack of models-of-care, and the triadic nature of discussions. This study evaluated a fertility toolkit for clinicians involved in FP discussions with pediatric, adolescent, and young adult patients and parents.Materials and Methods:A survey-based, longitudinal study of clinicians at The Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne involved in FP discussions undertaken at 3 time-points: 2014, alongside an education session for baseline assessment of oncofertility practices (survey 1); after each toolkit use to evaluate case-specific implementation (survey 2); 2016, to evaluate impact on clinical practice (survey 3).Results:Fifty-nine clinicians completed survey 1. Over 66% reported baseline dissatisfaction with the existing FP system; 56.7% were not confident in providing up-to-date information. Only 34.5% “often” or “always” provided verbal information; 14.0% “often” or “always” provided written information. Survey 2 was completed after 11 consultations. All clinicians were satisfied with the discussions and outcomes using the toolkit. Thirty-nine clinicians completed survey 3. Over 70% felt confident providing up-to-date FP knowledge, 67.7% “often” or “always” provided verbal information, and 35.4% “often” or “always” provided written information.Conclusions:Clinicians desire improvement in FP practice. The toolkit provided significant perceived and actual benefits.

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