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Obstetrics and Gynecology International
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 495142, 6 pages
Review Article

Safety of Ovarian Tissue Autotransplantation for Cancer Patients

1Research Laboratory on Human Reproduction, Faculty of Medicine, Free University of Brussels, 808, Route de Lennik, 1070 Bruxelles, Belgium
2Obstetrics and Gynaecology Department, Erasme Hospital, Route de Lennik, 1070 Bruxelles, Belgium

Received 15 September 2011; Accepted 22 November 2011

Academic Editor: Federica Moffa

Copyright © 2012 Laurence Bockstaele et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Cancer treatments can induce premature ovarian failure in almost half of young women suffering from invasive neoplasia. Cryopreservation of ovarian cortex and subsequent autotransplantation of frozen-thawed tissue have emerged as promising alternatives to conventional fertility preservation technologies. However, human ovarian tissue is generally harvested before the administration of gonadotoxic treatment and could be contaminated with malignant cells. The safety of autotransplantation of ovarian cortex remains a major concern for fertility preservation units worldwide. This paper discusses the main tools for detecting disseminated cancer cells currently available, their limitations, and clinical relevance.