Fertility Rescue Program

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Fertility Rescue: 
Ensuring a Cancer Diagnosis Doesn't Derail the Dream of Future Family

 

When a young woman is diagnosed with cancer, the rush to treatment is immediate.  The patient is thrust into the world of cancer and the primary hope is recovery.  Sometimes the patient is aware their fertility could be impacted, but overwhelmed and exhausted they put the "fertility issue" aside and pursue cancer treatment.

Sometimes the fertility issue is not even addressed. In a 2009 survey from Moffitt Cancer Center, it was reported that only 46% of oncologists discuss fertility preservation with cancer patients of child-bearing age. Very often, the oncologist is focused exclusively on beating the cancer and helping the patient regain a normal life. If they are aware of fertility preservation, they are reluctant to refer to patients to what they believe is an expensive procedure.

Yet fertility preservation for cancer patients is becoming an increasingly important issue. Of the estimated 1.5 million men and women who were diagnosed as having cancer in 2010, approximately 10% are younger than 45 years. The two leading cancer institutes in the world, the National Cancer Institute and Mayo Clinic, both came out with papers in January 2011 urging oncologists to encourage fertility preservation.

Given this growing need for more information and access, Sher Institute is launching a new program called Fertility Rescue, offering a $10,000 egg freezing cycle at no cost. Previously Sher Institute had offered a 50% discount through an organization called Fertile Hope through their Sharing Hope Program. Through Sharing Hope, Sher Fertility Institutes treated dozens of cancer patients from across the country. Now, we are taking the next step by offering the service at no cost. No other clinic in the country or the world offers egg freezing for free.

The core idea was to put Sher Institutes' egg freezing technology to philanthropic use. This technology allows us to genetically test eggs prior to freezing them so the cancer patient knows what is available to them when they go to use the eggs at a later point in life. This is called CGH - comparative genomic hybridization - we published on studies using CGH in 2006 and 2007.

Fertility Rescue is truly a "gift" from the Sher Institute doctors and clinical staff. We are all about creating and building families. We feel cancer patients should have a right to plan for theirs without the burden of additional emotional and financial concerns.

More and more people are surviving cancer and they should have the right to plan for a future family. There is no "catch" or hidden cost.

If you would like to learn more about the Fertility Rescue Program, here are the steps you need to take:
Have your oncologist or physician provide a referral to Sher Institute 
Contact Sher Institute to schedule a consultation with a doctor 
At your consultation, your doctor will set up a timeline for expedited egg freezing and assign you a nurse coordinator to assist you throughout the process.

Thanks to Fertility Rescue, Sher Institute can help cancer patients keep the hope of a future family alive.

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New Jersey: (908) 781-0666
New York: (646) 792-7476
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St. Louis: (314) 983-9000

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