Cancer during pregnancy: 10-year experience at a regional cancer reference center in Mexico

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Abstract

Introduction

Cancer during pregnancy is uncommon. However, recent trends in the prolongation of the childbearing age have made cancer-associated pregnancies more frequent. The objective of our study was to describe the frequency, types of cancer, and treatment with this association in our institution.

Material and methods

The clinical records of 36 patients who presented to a regional reference center in Mexico over 10 years were reviewed collecting demographics, pregnancy characteristics and outcomes, type of cancer, clinical stage, treatment, and oncological outcome.

Results

The following tumors were observed: Uterine cervix (20), breast (7), ovary (3), non-Hodgkin Lymphoma (2), and other malignancies (4). The mean age of the patients was 30 (range 20–39) years. Mean follow up was 17.8 (range 1–74) months. The pregnancies were synchronous in 23 cases and 13 were diagnosed in the following 12 months after birth. Mean gestational age of the product was of 37.4 weeks, resulting in 15 deliveries with healthy products, four abortions and four deaths. The majority of patients had advanced clinical stages. Overall survival was 36.4%.

Discussion

Cancer during pregnancy appears to have a worse outcome when compared to the results reported in the literature of non-pregnant women with the same conditions. This may be related to the advanced clinical stages we found. Cancer during pregnancy requires specialized attention to improve both fetal and maternal outcomes.

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