Knowledge and perceptions of infertility in female cancer survivors and their parents

Taryn Sandheinrich, Sarah B. Wondmeneh, Caroline Mohrmann, Katie Gettinger, Jennifer Henry, Robert J. Hayashi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Purpose: The purpose of this study was to assess knowledge and perceptions of infertility, reproductive concerns, quality of life, and emotional burden of fertility concerns in adolescent female cancer survivors and their parents. Methods: A cross-sectional design was used to investigate reproductive knowledge and concerns among female childhood cancer survivors and their parents. The instruments administered at a single, routine visit were the 13-item knowledge instrument, Adolescent Fertility Values Clarification Tool (VCT), Impact of Event Scale (IES), and Pediatrics Quality of Life Assessment (PedsQL). The knowledge instrument was given to both patients and caregivers, while the PedsQL and VCT were given to only patients and IES only to caregivers. Results: Twenty-six survivors and 23 parents completed evaluations. The mean age of survivors was 16. The mean knowledge instrument score for survivors was 9.5 (± 1.9) and 9.96 (± 1.7) for parents with a maximum possible score of 13. The VCT indicated almost all patients agreed or strongly agreed they would like more information on how their treatment may affect their fertility, with 84.6% identified wanting a baby in the future. The mean survivor PedsQL score was 67.7 (± 15.3). While parental IES scores as whole did not endorse symptoms of PTSD, 30% of our sample did fall within the range for PTSD. Conclusion: Although this population of women has above average knowledge scores, they still demonstrated a desire for more information on reproduction after cancer therapy. While PedsQL scores fell within a normal range, survivors report infertility would cause negative emotions. Implication for cancer survivors: This information can be used refine educational programs within survivorship clinics to improve knowledge of post-treatment reproductive health.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2433-2439
Number of pages7
JournalSupportive Care in Cancer
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2018


  • AYA
  • Cancer
  • Fertility
  • Knowledge
  • Quality of life
  • Survivorship


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