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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 212-222

Knowledge, attitude, and practice regarding fertility preservation among specialists involved in the care of cancer patients

Department Of Obstetrics, Gynaecology and Reproductive Medicine, Jindal IVF and Sant Memorial Hospital, Chandigarh, India

Correspondence Address:
Shefali Wadhwani
House no. 1048, Sector 37 - B, Chandigarh 160036
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/fsr.fsr_44_20

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Aim: To evaluate knowledge, attitude, and practices (KAP) regarding fertility preservation among various doctors involved in treatment and care of cancer patients and identify the potential barriers for the discussion of fertility preservation with patients. Settings and design: A survey-based cross-sectional study conducted in a tertiary ART centre in Northern India (Jindal IVF & Sant memorial nursing home, Chandigarh). Materials and methods: The study involved Gynecologists, Infertility specialists, Radiotherapists, General Surgeons and Oncologists from multiple institutions. The survey included a questionnaire consisting of 20 items. The study was closed after receipt of the first 201 responses. The responses to questions were analysed by the standard statistical method using SPSS- 22. Results: The knowledge among respondents from all specialties regarding impact of cancer treatment on fertility was very high. The rates of knowledge regarding various fertility preservation (FP) options were variable, least knowledge regarding the transposition of ovaries/gonads, testicular tissue cryopreservation, fertility-sparing chemotherapy. There were variations in clinician’s attitude and practice regarding various fertility issues of the patient and fertility preservation based on the specialty of clinicians. Nearly three-fourth discuss various FP options but only one-third provide written information on the same. The referral practice for FP was variable and was influenced by many factors. The factors considered most important for barriers to fertility preservation are Socioeconomic status/cost and affordability issues, 75.1% (patient factor), prognosis, type of cancer and type of treatment 60.2%, (clinician’s consideration). Conclusion: To improvise utilization of fertility preservation services, the deficit in clinician’s knowledge should be circumvented by providing them with basic, advanced, and up to date information particularly among primary contact clinicians of cancer patients. The referral pathways should be defined and made clear.

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