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Obstetrics and Gynecology International
Volume 2012, Article ID 525896, 7 pages
Review Article

Oocyte Cryostorage to Preserve Fertility in Oncological Patients

Phisiopathology of Reproduction and IVF Unit, Department of Ginecological and Obstetrical Sciences, S. Anna Hospital, University of Torino, 10126 Torino, Italy

Received 4 October 2011; Accepted 22 November 2011

Academic Editor: Federica Moffa

Copyright © 2012 Alberto Revelli 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.


Thanks to the progress in oncostatic treatments, young women affected by cancer have a fairly good chance of surviving the disease and leading a normal post-cancer life. Quite often, however, polychemiotherapy and/or radiotherapy can induce ovarian damage and significantly reduce the content of follicles and oocytes inside the ovary, thus predisposing the patient to menstrual disorders, infertility, and precocious menopause. Several techniques have been proposed to preserve fertility in these patients; among them oocyte collection and cryopreservation prior to the oncostatic treatment has been widely applied in the last decade. The proper indications, the permitting conditions, the available hormonal stimulation protocols, as well as the effectiveness and limits of this option will be discussed herein, with a comprehensive and up-to-date review of the two techniques commonly used to cryostore oocytes, the slow-freezing technique and the vitrification technique.