It is well recognised that treatment with surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy may affect a patient’s future fertility. The impact of cancer and treatment on future fertility may be different in male and female patients, and varies depending on tumour type, tumour site and treatment received. 


Evidence suggests that actual clinical practice regarding fertility discussion at the beginning of treatment varies across the UK and a significant proportion of TYA cancer survivors are unable to recall a discussion about fertility at the time of diagnosis, or are dissatisfied with the content of discussions that did take place.

This document aims to provide guidance for professionals to assist them to:

  • Have an informed discussion with teenage or young adult patients (and their family if appropriate) about the potential effects of planned treatment on future fertility.
  • Explain options for fertility preservation.
  • Ensure timely referral to an appropriate fertility expert.
  • Signpost teenagers and young adults to appropriate ongoing support once treatment has completed.


Best practice statement

Published June 2016