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Fertility Drugs and Cancer

Fertility drugs do not increase the risk of cancer.

Danish researchers in the BMA 2012 demonstrated in a very large study that the use of fertility drugs does not increase the risk of developing ovarian cancer. Over the past four decades there has been a dramatic increase in fertility treatments and the use of fertility drugs has increased exponentially.

In the past there have been reports that link the use of fertility drugs with the increased incidents of cancer. These studies were not conclusive and have not been proved. In a study done by Allen Jensen at the Danish Cancer Society examined in 54,362 women from 1963 – 1998 one of the largest studies done in any population. They did not find an overall increase in risk of ovarian cancer after the use of fertility drugs .In addition they did not find an increase in ovarian cancer in women who had undergone ten or more cycles of treatment which is very reassuring. They concluded that there was no convincing association between the overall risk of ovarian cancer and the use of fertility drugs. On the other hand, they also point out that many of the patients who have been treated had not yet reached the peak age at which ovarian cancer occur and these patients should continue to be monitored.

We believe that although this data is extremely reassuring in a study done with a huge number of women involved in treatment, with repeated IVF treatments we recommend that a yearly scan be offered to keep the women being reassured for the future.

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