The effects of Hodgkin's disease and combination chemotherapy on gonadal function in the adult male.
AffiliationChristie Hospital, Manchester, England
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AbstractThe effects of Hodgkin's disease and quadruple chemotherapy on gonadal function have been investigated in 92 male patients with Hodgkin's disease. Nineteen men were studied before they received chemotherapy. Fifteen of the 19 had a sperm count of 20 million/ml or greater and motility was at least 40% in all 15. In the remaining 74 men, gonadal function was studied after completion of chemotherapy (6 months--8 years). Semen was obtained from 49 men who had received six of more courses of MVPP. Forty-two were azoospermic and five of the remaining seven had a sperm count below 1 million/ml. Decreased libido and sexual activity was common during treatment but in the majority of men these returned to normal after completion of chemotherapy. The median FSH and LH levels and the median increments in serum FSH and LH levels after LHRH administration were significantly elevated compared with an age-matched control group. The mean testosterone level of the patients was significantly lower than in controls suggesting Leydig cell damage but androgen replacement therapy was not indicated in any individual patient. No evidence of hyperprolactinaemia as a result of MVPP therapy was found. These results suggest that sperm storage before chemotherapy represents the main possibility for these patients to have children after completing chemotherapy. Before starting chemotherapy, advice should be given to these patients concerning possible changes in sexual behavior during treatment and the very high incidence of permanent infertility following treatment.
CitationThe effects of Hodgkin's disease and combination chemotherapy on gonadal function in the adult male. 1982, 49 (3):418-22 Cancer