University of Cincinnati Cancer Institute | UCCI

Contact and Appointments: (513) 475-8500

Fertility Preservation for Men Who Have Cancer

With increasing numbers of people surviving cancer and resuming normal lives, there is a growing awareness of the importance of discussing fertility issues with men before cancer treatment begins. Several cancer-related factors may affect a man’s ability to produce sperm and conceive a biological child, including:

  • Cancer type
  • Dosage and duration of chemotherapy or radiation therapy
  • Location and extent of cancer surgery
  • Age
  • Pre-diagnosis fertility status

Sperm Freezing (Sperm Banking)

The simplest and most effective method of preserving your ability to conceive a child in the future is sperm banking prior to cancer treatment.

Sperm banking involves producing sperm through masturbation in a private room. To increase your rate of success in fathering a child at a later date, our doctors recommend more than one sperm collection before treatment. Six vials of sperm are recommended to be frozen for every child desired in the future. Typically, two to three vials can be stored from each collection.

If there is no sperm in the ejaculate (due to an obstruction or testicular dysfunction), we offer the option of a procedure called surgical sperm retrieval, performed by a urologist.

For more detailed descriptions of this procedure and options following cancer recovery, download our oncofertility patient packet.

Exploring Options after Cancer Treatment

If you’ve already finished cancer treatment without fertility preservation, or you choose not to proceed with fertility preservation at this time, we encourage you to see us for a consultation. We can evaluate your fertility status and explore options for the future.