This medical video explores the different ways that can help protect fertility during chemotherapy.
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Madeleine Ross: Good job! Amanda: Thank you mom! Madeleine Ross: You are welcome! Jennifer Matthews: Madeleine Ross is mom to 2-year-old Amanda and 4-year-old Charlie, but she wanted one more. Madeleine Ross: I still kind of always thought that three was a nice round number to have for children. Jennifer Matthews: Then Madeleine was diagnosed with breast cancer. Madeleine Ross: When he told me, I burst into tears. It was not a good moment. I was all alone. Jennifer Matthews: Surgery and chemotherapy followed. Chemotherapy often causes women to go into menopause, leaving them infertile. Madeleine decided to try a new drug to help keep her fertility. Madeleine Ross: Well, if it helps, research can help another woman down the line then yeah, we'll do it. Jennifer Matthews: An injection of the drug triptorelin is given each month during chemotherapy. The drug temporarily shuts down the ovaries. Dr. Pamela Munster says the treatment looks promising. Dr. Pamela N. Munster: The hope is that we get the ovaries out of cycling and therefore by shutting it down, shutting its function down, we try to preserve the damage to it. Jennifer Matthews: A smaller study showed this treatment worked. 80% of the women studied began menstruating again within a year. Dr. Pamela N. Munster: So even if a woman decides later on they don't want to have a child, they still may not want to be in a menopausal state. Jennifer Matthews: Madeleine decided she won't try for a third child after all. But she hopes this research will help other woman experience the joy of motherhood. This is Jennifer Matthews reporting.