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Fertility and Breast Cancer

5:54 PM, Dec 22, 2010   |    comments
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BUFFALO, NY (WGRZ) -- It's a common misconception about women who have survived breast cancer: becoming pregnant could be physically dangerous, or even cause cancer to recur.

It turns out that's not true.

Medical Oncologist Dr. Tracey O'Connor at Roswell Park Cancer Institute says research shows a breast cancer survivor who gets pregnant is likely to do better than her peers.  This is due to a so-called "health user effect" due to the healthy lifestyles many survivors lead.

"For some of my patients in their 20's and their early 30's when we treat them, they have very successful pregnancies.  So it is possible for women to pursue this after their breast cancer treatment when they've got a good prognosis and are looking forward to having a family," said Dr. O'Connor.

Dr. O'Connor adds many physicians will ask women to wait about two years after their cancer goes away before trying to get pregnant.  That's because if cancer is going to appear in another organ, it usually does so within two years.

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