Thursday, 12 December 2013

There is no link between fertility drugs and ovarian cancer

There is no link between fertility drugs and ovarian cancer

When we plan infertility treatment, medication plays an important role. As an infertility expert I need prescribe several drugs to the patients. Some of these drugs are swollen and some are injected. It is a known fact that infertility drugs have some or the other side-effects because the drugs directly interrupt the hormones in the body. Some of these side-effects are hardly noticeable while a few are quite visible and irritating.

There has been a lot of misconception and misunderstanding about infertility drugs and as an infertility expert I spend considerable time in counseling the patients and convincing about these baseless theories. People come with the fear of ovarian cancer mostly and it is quite hard to convince them about no linkage between infertility treatment and ovarian cancer. The scary thought sometimes forces couples to stop infertility treatment. This is an unfortunate situation and therefore, we do not leave any chance to correct it.

What does the recent study say?

Undoubtedly there is no relation between the ovarian cancer and infertility drugs. These drugs neither induce nor boost the chances of getting affected by this fatal disease. However, there has been a recent study conducted that clearly suggests that there is no direct or indirect harmful effect on the reproductive system.

The results of the research indicate that ovarian cancer is rare as compared to uterine and breast cancers. It develops in the later part of life and therefore, no significant correlation with the age group that undergoes infertility treatment. However, researchers recommend doing further research for long-term use (more than a year) of infertility drugs.

What are the risk factors then?

It is a fact that infertility treatment is not directly associates with ovarian cancer, but there are some risk factors clearly associated with it:

a. Age of the female: Ovarian cancers normally occur after menopause because the female reproductive hormones prevent it.

b. Family history: If anybody in close family (mothers, sisters) have been diagnosed with ovarian cancer, then the female is very likely to have it. Doctors recommend frequent checking of the disease in order to prevent it in the early stage.

c. Females who have never conceived: Ovarian cancer is more common in the females who have not been able to conceive even once.During the fertilization process body secrets hormones that prevent ovarian cancer.

d. Secretion of male hormones: Sometimes we have to prescribe drugs that cause androgen secretion in women. It increases the risk of ovarian cancer.

e. Endometriosis disease: It is very common in women and the treatment involves a few drugs that increase the risk of the ovarian cancer.

The prevention

When we convince the patients about no link between the ovarian cancer and infertility drugs, we also tell them about the probable symptoms of it. Menstrual irregularities or pain in the stomach is the common symptom. Normally women ignore it and the problem gets identified in the later stage. Regular check-up and immediate medical attention could prevent and treat the problem quickly.

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