Cancer patients who are pregnant do not need to delay chemotherapy or even perform abortions because chemotherapy is considered safe for the fetus. The negative effects exactly found in babies born prematurely to avoid chemotherapy.
The scientists who examined the effects of health and mental development of children born to mothers who did cancer therapy during pregnancy, found the children were not affected by chemotherapy drugs. Their development actually disturbed if they were born prematurely, either naturally or induced. Data research showed children suffer more from premature birth than by chemotherapy prenatal.
Increasing number of cases of cancer that strikes people of productive age caused quite a lot of pregnant women who suffering cancer. In Europe each year 2500-5000 pregnant women diagnosed with cancer. The diagnosis was traumatic for expectant mothers who are worried cancer treatment therapy would reflect badly on her fetus.
Based on experience, most expectant mothers are deciding to abortion because they fear the effects of cancer therapy on the fetus. On the other hand, doctors also often advise patients to delay of cancer therapeutics or accelerate the childbirth, usually at 32 weeks' gestation.
However, the research results of Frederic Amant -gynecologist oncologist from the University Hospitals Leuven in Belgium, is not appropriate if the chemotherapy is given after 12-14 weeks of gestation. Besides, only a small fraction of chemotherapy drugs that can be up to the placenta and fetus. The drug, according Amant, has no health effects on fetal development.
Of the 70 infants studied, 68 were born during the study period and two thirds were born before 37 weeks of age. Amant found, type of birth defect found in children are almost the same as children from the general population. The researchers also found no cardiac abnormalities.
However, if there is disorder of cognitive development, measured by IQ scores and behavioral tests, is still quite normal. Only those whose IQ is low primarily due to preterm birth. So far has been known that premature infants are at high risk experiencing difficulties in learning. Research has also shown that babies who were born 1-2 weeks early before age 40 weeks were also more often have difficulties in learning.
however, Amant emphasized that the results of this research remains to be proven by long-term research. At this time researchers do not yet know whether the impact of chemotherapy on long-term pregnancy, for example on the fertility of the child or the risk of cancer in the future.