Preservation of Fertility During and After Lymphoma Treatment

Richard Anderson, MD, PhD, discusses ways to preserve fertility in patients who are undergoing or have complete treatment for lymphoma.

Richard Anderson, MD, PhD, Elsie Inglis professor of Clinical Reproductive Science and deputy director Centre for Reproductive Health at the University of Edinburgh, discusses ways to preserve fertility in patients who are undergoing or have complete treatment for lymphoma.

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0:07| So, in terms of preserving fertility, storing sperm, freezing sperm has been around for a long time. But one of the problems for that, and it does very much relate to patients with lymphoma, is that often spermatogenesis is already markedly impaired before treatment even starts. A lot of guys coming along to store sperm will find that their sperm count is already very low.

0:31 | And of course, they may be unwell in themselves, that may preclude or may compromise, being able to store a specimen. For women we've had embryo freezing as part of an IVF procedure for a long time. But I guess now probably for a dozen years or so, egg freezing using vitrification, so ultra-fast freezing of eggs, has become the norm and has revolutionized the success with that. Because with slow cryopreservation techniques, eggs just didn't survive that. But with vitrification, a frozen egg is almost as good as a fresh egg, which has really been revolutionary to the whole field of reproduction.