Currently submitted to: Interactive Journal of Medical Research
Date Submitted: Oct 31, 2018
Open Peer Review Period: Nov 3, 2018 - Dec 29, 2018
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Oncofertility decision support resources for women of reproductive age: a systematic review
Cancer treatments have the potential to cause infertility among women of reproductive age. Many cancer patients do not receive sufficient oncofertility information or referrals to reproductive specialists prior to beginning cancer treatment. While health care providers cite lack of awareness on the available oncofertility resources, the majority of cancer patients utilize the Internet as a resource to find additional information to supplement discussions with their providers.
To identify and characterize existing oncofertility decision support resources for women of reproductive age with a diagnosis of any cancer.
Five databases and the grey literature were searched from 1994 to 2018. The developer and content information for identified resources was extracted. Each resource underwent a quality assessment.
Thirty-one open access resources including four decision aids and 27 health educational materials were identified. The most common fertility preservation options listed in the resources included embryo (100%), egg (100%), and ovarian tissue (97%) freezing. Notably, approximately one-third (35%) contained references and five (16%) had a reading level of grade 8 or below. Resources were of varying quality; two decision aids from Australia and the Netherlands, two booklets from Australia and the United Kingdom, and three websites from Canada and the United States rated as the highest quality.
This comprehensive review characterizes numerous resources available to support patients and providers with oncofertility information, counseling, and decision-making. More focus is required to improve the awareness and the access of existing resources among patients and providers. Providers can address patient information needs by leveraging or adapting existing resources to support clinical discussions and their specific patient population. Clinical Trial: NA
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