For those willing to go through fertility treatments, there is still hope to have one or more biological children. Oocytle Cryopreservation is the freezing of human eggs, with the goal of preserving the reproductive ability in women of childbearing age. At a later date, embryos can be created with the sperm of a male, after which a surrogate could be used or, if their own uterus is still intact, they may be able to carry the child to term themselves.
For those who want to ensure their risky gene mutation is not passed along to their children, pre-implantation genetic diagnosis is the process of screening embryos . However, there may be moral implications involved for some when considering the disposal of mutation-positive embryos.
Pre-Implantation Genetic Diagnosis
A male or female risky gene carrier parent has a 50% of passing an inherited gene mutation to each of their biological children. In the case where both parents are HBOC syndrome carriers, there may be additional risks to the child. As an example, if both parents carry a BRCA2 mutation there is an implication in Fanconi anemia. Learn more
Estrogen-suppressing drugs that result in infertility are sometimes recommended for risky gene carriers for preventative means, or are recommended to reduce the risk of a cancer recurrence. Removal of ovaries and fallopian tubes greatly reduces the risk of ovarian cancer in carriers and is usually recommended when a woman is still in childbearing years, also causing infertility. In some cases, removal of the uterus is also recommended.