Clinical guide to fertility preservation in hematopoietic cell transplant recipients.

Publication Type:

Journal Article


Bone marrow transplantation (2014)


2014, Clinical Research Division, February 2014


With broadening indications, more options for hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) and improvement in survival, the number of long-term HCT survivors is expected to increase steadily. Infertility is a frequent problem that long-term HCT survivors and their partners face and it can negatively impact on the quality of life. The most optimal time to address fertility issues is before the onset of therapy for the underlying disease; however, fertility preservation should also be addressed before HCT in all children and patients of reproductive age, with referral to a reproductive specialist for patients interested in fertility preservation. In vitro fertilization (IVF) and embryo cryopreservation, oocyte cryopreservation and ovarian tissue banking are acceptable methods for fertility preservation in adult women/pubertal females. Sperm banking is the preferred method for adult men/pubertal males. Frequent barriers to fertility preservation in HCT recipients may include the perception of lack of time to preserve fertility given an urgency to move ahead with transplant, lack of patient-physician discussion because of several factors (for example, time constraints, lack of knowledge), inadequate access to reproductive specialists, and costs and lack of insurance coverage for fertility preservation. There is a need to raise awareness in the medical community about fertility preservation in HCT recipients.Bone Marrow Transplantation advance online publication, 13 January 2014; doi:10.1038/bmt.2013.211.