Chemotherapy treatment 'does not pose risks to pregnant women'

10 February 2012

Mums-to-be who are worried that undertaking chemotherapy for cancer treatment may damage the health of their unborn child have been assured that this is not the case.

A new study carried out by researchers at Belgium's Leuven Cancer Institute has disclosed that chemotherapy does not pose any risks to babies.

In order to demonstrate their point, Dr Frederic Amant, of the institute's Multidisciplinary Breast Cancer Center, and colleagues studied 68 pregnancies.

The women involved in the research were subjected to 236 cycles of chemotherapy collectively, with the results being that the babies were born at an average of 36 weeks into the pregnancy period.

Dr Elyce Cardonick, from the department of obstetrics and gynaecology at New Jersey's Cooper University Hospital, noted: "The study has the potential to affect clinical practice - if we can present this reassuring data to pregnant women with cancer, women might be more likely to accept treatment during pregnancy when indicated."

A recent paper put together by Deborah Glueck, an investigator at the University of Colorado Cancer Center, suggested that many women diagnosed with breast cancer are failing to follow recommended MRI treatment.

Posted by Jeanette Royston

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