Treatment Approach To Pregnant Women

Chemo Secrets From a Breast Cancer Survivor

Breast Cancer Survivors

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Revathi Suppiah, Joanna Brell, and Matt E. Kalaycio

The hematologic malignancies are uncommon disorders in reproductive-age women. Cancer complicates 1 in 1000 pregnancies.1 The most frequently occurring tumor in pregnancy is cervical cancer, followed by breast cancer, melanoma, ovarian cancer, thyroid cancer, leukemia, and lymphoma.2 The incidence of leukemia during pregnancy is estimated to be 1 per 75,000 pregnancies.3 Pregnancy per se does not increase the risk of malignancy.

Cancer is the leading cause of death among women aged 35-54 years,4 and as childbearing increases among older females, the incidence of pregnancies complicated by malignancy is likely to increase. Depending on the type of malignancy and stage of diagnosis, postponing chemotherapy until after delivery may not be feasible. This is often the case in acute leukemia.5 The use of chemotherapy during the second and third trimester has been reported with good outcomes. Despite the emotionally and physically demanding therapy, pregnant patients with leukemia have successfully delivered healthy term infants either before, during, or after chemotherapy.

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