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Overview of fertility preservation: History, management, available strategies and future directions in the Philippines

Virgilio M. Novero, Jr., MD, MSc, FPOGS, FPSRM
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Philippine General Hospital, University of the Philippines-Manila

Background: The increasing number of young survivors after cancer treatment and of patients with non-malignant conditions who are at risk for subfertility has resulted in a demand for fertility preservation services, including the Philippines.

Objective: The aim of this paper is to provide an overview of the history, indications, and management principles of fertility preservation. Also, the available strategies in the Philippines in both pre-pubertal and post-pubertal men and women and future directions of the field in the country will be discussed.

Materials and methods: Literature review, historical accounts

Results and conclusions: Fertility preservation should be a priority when treating children and adults of reproductive age with agents that have deleterious effects on the gonads. If harmful treatment will be used, the options of fertility preservation should be discussed, as early as possible by the primary physician in collaboration with the oncologist and the reproductive medicine specialist. Most of the known options for fertility preservation are available in the Philippines and are being implemented in the local IVF centers. Recent developments hint of a potentially faster progress in the field with the establishment of the Philippine Society for Fertility Preservation in collaboration with other professional societies and a linkage with the Department of Health with the signing into law of the National Integrated Cancer Control Act of 2019.