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Pregnancy Outcome in Cancer Survivors

 The largest follow up of patients who were previously treated for cancer is the Childhood Cancer Survivor Study (CCSS) with up of 20,000 childhood Cancer Survivors. During this study, cancer survivors who conceived were followed during pregnancy and after childbirth. The main findings in this study for patients who were treated with chemotherapy were the following:

  • Decreased live birth rates in cancer survivors compared to their siblings
  • No increased risk of stillbirth during pregnancy
  • No specific chemotherapy agent effect on adverse pregnancy outcomes
  • No increased risk of major congenital abnormalities
  • No increased risk in the offspring of developing subsequent cancer

Patients in the Childhood Cancer Survivors Study who were treated with radiation therapy to the pelvis and then conceived had the following findings:

  • Two-fold increased risk of low birth weight in the babies delivered
  • Increased risk of preterm birth

Current research indicates that pregnancy after cancer treatment does not negatively affect survival or trigger recurrence of the cancer in most patients, including those with breast cancer