Babies after chemo

I am 34 and was diagoised with bc on 3rd June, had a masectemy and lymph nodes removed and am now reaching my 4th lot of TAC chemo and then 4 weeks of radio (just over Christmas!! lovely!!!). I will then be on Tamoxifen for 5 years. I am also having Zolodex injections until the chemo ends. I am aware that that the chemo could make me infertile, I have no children and was just wondering if anyone out there have gone on to have children after receiving TAC. l have been told that I won’t know until I start trying if I have been left infertile. Do you have periods at all when on Tamoxifen and is there a scan (paid privately of course) available that I can have to see what state “my bits” have been left in!!! This is the first time I have joined the forum but am feeling a bit like I am the only 34 year old woman (with no family history) to have BC (which I know I’m not), although I have yet to see anyone my age when going for the chemo. Thank you for any comments passsed.

Hi ellie and welcome to the BCC forums, I am sure the other forum members will be along soon with support for you. I moved your post to this room ‘Undergoing treatment’ where you should receive more replies for this sort of query, you may also wish to post it in the Younger Womens’ room too, (if you are unsure how to do this I can do it on your behalf if you let me know.)

In addition, you are welcome to call our helpline for support and a chance to talk through the concerns you have at the moment in confidence with one of our specialist nurses, the number is 0808 800 6000 Mon-Fri 9am-5pm and Sat 9am-2pm.

Best wishes

Hi Ellie,

I was diagnosed age 30 back in June 06. Like you, I was by far the youngest whilst in having surgery and when I went for my chemo too. I also don’t have any family history. I’ve had a mastectomy, 8 x Epi-CMF chemo, radiotherapy and am on Zoladex and Tamoxifen combined for 2 years; this is the preferred hormone treatment for very pre-menopausal women who want to have children where I am being treated. I know, however, that a lot of places do not offer this and also some do not agree with it. Two girls I know have completed this course of treatment and gone on to have babies.
As I was due to have fertility treatment just before being diagnosed with BC I am already in the ‘system’ and do know a lot about this so if I can help you out just ask. It is a blood test after stopping hormone therapy that will tell what state your bits are in and I was told that a scan would not be much use. I have a meeting in a few weeks with my fertility Dr so will know more about what options are available to me come January when I finish my hormone cocktail.
Best of luck

Hi Ellie,

I’m 24 and am having TAC chemo and then herceptin and tamoxifen because I was triple positive. Fertility was a massive issue for me and I wanted eggs to be harvested but I’m sure as you know because being positive for hormones it not advisable. However, my oncologist told me that even if I wasn’t hormone positive he would refuse to take eggs because there is no evidence that TAC makes you infertile… basically he said that things should return to normal and obviously age was a factor too… hope this helps!

There was no family history for me either and I do agree that it is bizarre going through chemo and never seeing anyone of similar age… i think it makes you wonder why you’re the youngest going through this!

Hope the rest of your treatment goes well for you



I always feel like a BAD PENNY when I reply to posts like this one - so, please accept my apologies now.

I was dx at the grand old age of 34 - had WLE, CMF chemo, rads, 2 years of Zoladex and 5 years of Tamoxifen.

I can always remember saying ‘well, at least its up there and not down below’ regarding the baby-making.

Unfortunately, I had only been in a relationship for 6 months when I was dx - things were very rocky to say the least.
We worked it out - got married and are very happy.
We abided by the book - and waited until the 5 years of Tamoxifen were up - and were given the go-ahead to start trying for a baby.
A year on, nothing had happened so we were referred to the Gynae-bloke. We had already decided that we didnt want to go down the IVF route but really needed to know if the chemo had done any damage.We had our appointment with Gynae-Man and came out suicidal. He sat there basically shouting at us that we were mad. Did we not realise that the cancer could come back? The levels of oestrogen would be higher etc etc etc.
Although in a state of shock at what he’d said, we asked for us both to be checked out.

Little did we know, that I was actually pregnant whilst we were sitting there!!!

So, at the age of 41, conceiving naturally - I was pregnant. We were sooooooooooo happy!!
During the pregnancy, my Mum passed away just 10 days after 2ndary dx of bones due to bladder cancer and I had to have amneocenthesis (sp?) - it was a rocky ride.
Then I had a problem with my rib, followed by a bout of sciatica, followed with the same rib problem.
At the end of my pregnancy, I was having to use walking sticks/crutches/wheelchair - I could not put any weight on my left leg.
I had an enormous bump and the difficulties were put down to this - I was sent for an additional scan on the baby whereby a consultant picked up on the fact that I could not weight-bear.

Arrangements were made for a C-section on 21 August 2007 and I was sent for MRI etc on 23 August 2007.
The Breast Consultant came over to tell me that the cancer was back - I had bone secondaries in my hip/pelvic/lumbar region and a spot on my rib.
I just sat there ignorant to secondaries, saying ‘but something can be done about it,cant it?’
Our baby was just 2 days old.

Easy to say in hindsight I know, but we wouldnt have gone down this route had we been aware of secondaries. (I hope that doesnt sound too stupid - just thought that if it came back, it would be another lump - followed by chemo, rads and tabs). If we had known in the beginning about secondaries, things would have been so different for us.

Maybe I’m just unlucky, but it absolutely cripples me when I think that my baby is going to lose his mum - maybe 2 weeks, 2 months or 2 years - who knows.

So, there you go - that’s my BAD PENNY story.
I just want you to really think about what you want and wish you good luck with your future

Take care

Anne xx

PS I too was the youngest one on the chemo-ward! And there is no family history of it either.

Hi Anne

Being an oldie and never having or wanted children I don’t usually read posts about wanting children after bc.

But just wanted to say to you Anne how much I feel for you, how good it is to see you writing such an honest and open account which though awful and tragic will I hope help other young women make decisions which are right for them. Knowledge is power.

Yours is the kind of story which has to be told. Women must know the risk of secondaries and what a secondaries diagnosis means.

I know you will be giving your baby all the loving in the world for just as long as you can.

very very best wishes

Jane x

A big thank you to everyone for all their very personal comments. I am going just get through the next 3 lots of chemo, enjoy christmas, drink lots, go to lots of parties, start radio and enjoy a bit of time with my fiance for the next few years…and then not worry too much about it, one thing at a time as they say. I had only been with my boyfriend for about 8 months and in the space of a month, I was diagnosed, moved in with him, he proposed, had the op, redecorated my flat ready to get rented out, and I had to leave my job, best to be busy eh!!!

At the end of the day I just want to be alive. My BC was hormone related, (bloody hormones!!!) and my oncologist did say that if I did get pregnant in the future the BC wouldnt necessarily come back, (he said there was no link), they would just keep an eye on me but the secondaries is a bit of a worry and I am so sorry to hear that and appreciate your story Anne. I don’t mean this the way it comes across as I wouldnt wish this upon anyone but it is nice to hear from people around my age group.


Oh and thank you Carla as well, I will prob be asking you lots of questions and I hope everything goes well for you, (do you really want sleepless nights though??!! ha ha).

Hi ellie,

I was diagnosed at 28 (11 years ago). I was the youngest at the hospital too. I have had chemo, radio therapy, more chemo, tamoxifen, zoladex, more chemo and now am on femara.

After lots of thought I decided that it best not to have kids as the hospital advised me against it. So when I met my husband we discussed it and decided that it was a good idea not to have children because of the risk.

Last year in June I was diagnosed secondaries in lungs and bones. So after all that it decided to come back anyway. So you just never know what is the best thing to do. We also do not have a family history. Just a bolt out of the blue.

It is a very hard decision BUT one thing is for sure. You need to enjoy every day as you just do not know what is around the corner.

Good luck with the treatment

Earlier on, I was in the shower - and started thinking about this post, so I’d like to add to it.

I’d like to say thank you to JaneRA - it is extremely hard to write my story and I do feel very awkward but I want to let others know what the risks are. I had a letter from my Breast Consultant, congratulating me on my pregnancy and also stating that 7 years post dx, that the cancer was unlikely to return. I found this very hard to deal with after the secondary dx - it haunted me for quite some time (still does on my bitter days if I’m perfectly honest) and I love my Breast Consultant to bits.

BUT what I would like to suggest to anyone contemplating pregnancy is, ask for bone/MRI/CT scans prior to ‘trying’. I most certainly would have done if I had known what I know now.

Good Luck

Love, Hugs and Best Wishes

Anne xx

Oh Anne, reading what you have written, well, I feel for you so much, you are an amazing woman to have put this down for all to read.

I was 39 when dx’d with BC, and already with a history of problems in conceiving but a small part of me always ‘hoped’ all these years that I would repeat the pregnacies from my 20’s but successfully the next time. Back then they had ended in a miscarriage and then an ectopic, but I so wanted things to be different. So now chemo put me into menopause, and it’s all over, and Monday I have an op to see why the lymph nodes are a problem again, fingers crossed it’s nothing bad.

Anne, you have brought life into the world, and that makes you a special person, a Mom. No matter what happens from here I feel that your baby will love you for being who you are and for bringing them into this world. Keep your strength Anne, I hope you see many years of your babies life.


does it make a difference with the type of BC you have?

I’m HER+, so will the hormones from a potential pregnancy (futurisic and fantasy thinking) affect and increase my chance of this bl**dy thing coming back and coming back with a vengance?

Ermm not sure

I am ER+, PR+ and HER2-


I am 39 and was dx in April this year. I was the youngest chemo patient too, by decades most of the time. My girls are 4 and 2. When first dx I felt guilty that I had had them and now may not live to see them grow up, and may have passed something genetic on to them by getting bc pre-menopausally, as if it were somehow my fault, but I have got past that now. However, I certainly wouldn’t have any more kids. But I realise that I have had the joy of my children, and someone who has not may have a really strong pull to have babies even after bc. It’s so personal.

Good luck in whatever you decide.

Ann, I hope you get some treatment that prolongs your life, and in any event your child will always know that they were much wanted and loved.



I felt the urge to comment on this thread. I am very similar to kindensurprise, as I was 40 in March this year, and have a 4 year old daughter and nearly 2 year old son. I feel really guilty about having bought them into this world, and not knowing if I will be here to help them grow up. I have liver mets as well, my bc dx and liver mets were diagnosed together last july, so very difficult for me emotionally. I didnt bring my babies here to abandon them and it breaks my heart to know that I probably wont see them grow up and leave school. I am doing OK for now and finished chemo last year and now on herceptin alone.

I cant obviously have any more children now, and I certainly would not risk it, even if by a miracle my liver and bc went into remission. I value the time I now have with them.

I can understand how hard it must be for everyone who has not had the priviledge of having their own children, to experience that amazing feeling, but on the other side of the coin it is absolutely devastating to know that “mummy may not be there” . To know that I may not be here longterm and help my daughter through her adolesence(sp??), and her learning new things at school etc (she just started full time in september), and also see my little boy actually start school. See them both go to secondary school etc etc is just so hard to actually deal with and think about.

Sorry am rambling and this post probably not much help, and I cant really convey into words wot I really want to.

I want to wish all you ladies luck on your course of treatments etc, but would really urge u to consider all areas of having babies after chemo and your dx, and get as much advice as possible. I dont want to sound heartless or selfish, but the reality of having children and cancer is awful, heartbreaking, but on the plus side they keep me going and make me laugh and smile.

Lots of love

Hi Ellie

I am going through the same as you. I am 38 yrs old.

I was dx in Dec 2007 and was unable to have assisted conception due to cancer being oestrogen positive. I am now on tamoxifen for the next 5 yrs and unable to get pregnant whilst on these tablets.

I had a miscarriage in August 2007 which may have triggered the BC.

My OH is now worried about having sex just in case i fall pregnant. We both dont like condoms and I cannot go on the pill for obvious reasons. I think the only option for me is the coil but i have had friends who have a had a few problems with these so dont really wont to go down that root. I will be seeing my onc on 27.10.08 so will ask them about it then. My periods started again in September. The last one before that was January. I was on the zoladex injection whilst having chemo so i hope i can have children after i have finished tamoxifen.

Lots of love

Christine xxx

hi - just want to give some of you a positive story and some hope when there sometimes seems like there is none- had BC diagnosed when I was 31 in 2002 my only daughter was just 10 months old - very aggressive Grade 3 lobular, 5/12 lymph nodes and bi-lateral mastectomy. Also HERA+ and fortunate to be one of the first in the two year arm of the Herceptin trial. However, when I finished all my treatments in 2005 (inc 8 FEC chemo) I was given a lot of positive reassurance from my oncologist and the hospital in general and I felt confident that if I could get pregnant it would be fine. I gave my body the required 6 week wash-out of tamoxifen and had my coil removed. Within a month I was pregnant and felt strongly that I was having twins as it was different to my first pregnancy. I got an early scan on the pretence that I was concerned about the fact that I had had cancer and at 10 weeks pregnant, lo and behold there were two babies! No one had believed me and yet I knew all along! My twins are now 2 and a bit and my eldest daughter is 7. I know the future is uncertain and this is quite difficult to live with some days but you just have to get on with it and hope that all the new medical advances will keep us all alive for as long as possible!

Good luck for all of you wanting or trying for a baby,

blimey, what a lot of emotional threads…
i was 37 when dx, 1 year on now, 5 yeasr of drugs ahead but my doc says i could come off in 2 or 3 if having a baby is what i want…
he doesn’t seem to think that any research shows that having a baby can be bad…even for hormone positive…

but i think i would feel selfish,with my unknown future…
is it def true that pregnancy is a risk for hormone positive BC coming back?

Hello Ladies

I haven’t been on for a while, so I will introduce myself again.
I am 36yrs old (35 when diagnosed in March 08. I was going though IVF in January this year (5 eggs harvested) when I found a lump in my left breast on the night of my egg collection, no family history. I was diagnosed with Invasive Ductal Carcinoma Insitu (DCIS) grade 3. I then had a left masectomy with 6 lymph nodes removed(all clear). I then had a ectopic pregnancy with right tube removed. I have had 4 cycles of epirubicin and cyclophosamide and 4 cycles and Tax. I have finished chemo (HOORAY) and i am due to start tamoxifen shortly. I too have a difficult decision to make about what to do with my harvested eggs.
Anne you are truly an inspirational lady to discuss your heartbreaking story .

Lots of love

Lots of Love