With the celebration of Mother’s Day on 21st of March, all mothers remember their journey to motherhood. While for the 30-year-old Emirati SA, the possibility to bear her own child looked bleak after she was treated against cancer. However, she did not give up and visited several oncology centers globally. Unfortunately, none of her eggs were preserved and with limited time for her chemotherapy she opted for ‘partial oophorectomy,’ for cryopreservation which minimized her ovarian reserve considerably with the occurrence of premature menopause. Not yielding any positive result, SA returned to her home country to consult professionals considering other treatment solutions.
After search for treatments, she visited Fakih IVF Fertility Center, one of the main infertility centers in the GCC, which trusts with the proper counseling, diagnosis and treatment options, patients undergoing chemotherapy as part of their cancer treatments also stand a chance to conceive. In 2018, SA then visited Fakih IVF Fertility Center after numerous unsuccessful attempts left her feeling frustrated and she nearly lost hope about having her own baby. On application of a few natural and stimulation cycles, Dr. Dalia Abdelwahab, Specialist Reproductive Endocrinologist and Infertility at Fakih IVF, was able to retrieve two eggs which were fertilized by ICSI and two embryos were transferred, after which the journey to a successful pregnancy began.
Dr. Dalia said, “The counselling session for any patient treated against cancer is essential and should include disclosing all available options of cryopreservation, before suggesting cancer treatment, rather than just risking fertility and let the couple suffer the consequence of infertility and an incomplete family longing for something more. Something or someone to strengthen the family’s household.
She also mentioned: "In the course of the treatment process I tried to absorb the psychological state that the patient was going through as much as possible and sought out to make her feel cozy, as the psychological factor has a big influence on the results in the course of the process. With the presence of the latest assistive reproductive technologies in the center, we were able to succeed."
Chemotherapy leads to the killing of Oocytes, hence dramatically lower reserve, quality of eggs, and uterus respectively. This can subsequently lead to loss of fertility and in certain cases women have reported going into premature or early menopause.
“I was aware that the chemotherapy I was undergoing was incredibly strong and would severely lower the quality of my eggs. After repeated cycles of the treatment, I felt that I had little to lose and did not give up on my possibilities at motherhood and live with the joy of a child. What made this journey even easier was Dr. Dalia who offered me with the appropriate consultation and put forward a range of treatment solutions that work best with a case like mine. I wish every women seeking motherhood to make her dream come true” the patient said.
In cases compared to SA’s the most significant step is the pre-treatment comprehensive counselling of the available options, for fertility preservation before beginning chemotherapy. The stimulation of the ovaries should be undertaken to cryopreserved embryos/eggs, before any substantial damage to the ovaries. Post-treatment special consideration must be taken to get rid of the chances of any complications.
“The main concern is not only to achieve a positive pregnancy, but it is much more, we need to acquire a healthy successful pregnancy, delivery and avoid pregnancy related complications, and that is our goal at Fakih IVF,” Dr. Abdelwaheb said.
Fakih IVF Fertility Center is one of the leading Infertility, Gynecology, Obstetrics, Genetics and IVF centers in the GCC region with centers in Abu Dhabi, Al Ain and Dubai. With several ultra-modern technologies, the center is constantly advancing in the field of reproductive medicine throughout the region.