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Cancers (Basel) ; 14(6)2022 Mar 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1742334


The preservation of fertility in cancer patients is a crucial aspect of modern reproductive medicine. Amenorrhea and infertility often occur after cancer therapy, worsening the quality of life. Cryopreservation of oocytes in young cancer patients is a therapeutic option for preserving fertility. A prospective study was conducted on 508 cancer patients who underwent oocyte cryopreservation to preserve fertility between 1996 and 2021 including the COVID-19 pandemic period. Patients underwent ovarian stimulation, followed by egg retrieval, and oocytes were cryopreserved by slow freezing or vitrification. Sixty-four thawing/warming cycles were performed. Survival, fertilization, pregnancy, and birth rate over the thawing/warming cycles were obtained. The data were compared with those from a group of 1042 nononcological patients who cryopreserved supernumerary oocytes. An average of 8.8 ± 6.9 oocytes were retrieved per cycle, and 6.1 ± 4.2 oocytes were cryopreserved. With their own stored oocytes, 44 patients returned to attempt pregnancy. From a total of 194 thawed/warmed oocytes, 157 survived (80%). In total, 100 embryos were transferred in 57 transfer/cycles, and 18 pregnancies were achieved. The pregnancy rate per transfer and pregnancy rate per patient were 31% and 41%, respectively. No statistically significant differences were observed between oncological patients and nononcological patients. A total of 15 babies were born from oncological patients. Children born showed normal growth and development. One minor malformation was detected.

J Gynecol Oncol ; 33(1): e10, 2022 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1573883


OBJECTIVE: Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak has correlated with the disruption of screening activities and diagnostic assessments. Endometrial cancer (EC) is one of the most common gynecological malignancies and it is often detected at an early stage, because it frequently produces symptoms. Here, we aim to investigate the impact of COVID-19 outbreak on patterns of presentation and treatment of EC patients. METHODS: This is a retrospective study involving 54 centers in Italy. We evaluated patterns of presentation and treatment of EC patients before (period 1: March 1, 2019 to February 29, 2020) and during (period 2: April 1, 2020 to March 31, 2021) the COVID-19 outbreak. RESULTS: Medical records of 5,164 EC patients have been retrieved: 2,718 and 2,446 women treated in period 1 and period 2, respectively. Surgery was the mainstay of treatment in both periods (p=0.356). Nodal assessment was omitted in 689 (27.3%) and 484 (21.2%) patients treated in period 1 and 2, respectively (p<0.001). While, the prevalence of patients undergoing sentinel node mapping (with or without backup lymphadenectomy) has increased during the COVID-19 pandemic (46.7% in period 1 vs. 52.8% in period 2; p<0.001). Overall, 1,280 (50.4%) and 1,021 (44.7%) patients had no adjuvant therapy in period 1 and 2, respectively (p<0.001). Adjuvant therapy use has increased during COVID-19 pandemic (p<0.001). CONCLUSION: Our data suggest that the COVID-19 pandemic had a significant impact on the characteristics and patterns of care of EC patients. These findings highlight the need to implement healthcare services during the pandemic.

COVID-19 , Endometrial Neoplasms , Endometrial Neoplasms/epidemiology , Endometrial Neoplasms/therapy , Female , Humans , Pandemics , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
Cancer Med ; 10(1): 208-219, 2021 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-932418


BACKGROUND: The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on European gynaecological cancer patients under active treatment or follow-up has not been documented. We sought to capture the patient perceptions of the COVID-19 implications and the worldwide imposed treatment modifications. METHODS: A patient survey was conducted in 16 European countries, using a new COVID-19-related questionnaire, developed by ENGAGe and the Hospital Anxiety & Depression Scale questionnaire (HADS). The survey was promoted by national patient advocacy groups and charitable organisations. FINDINGS: We collected 1388 forms; 592 online and 796 hard-copy (May, 2020). We excluded 137 due to missing data. Median patients' age was 55 years (range: 18-89), 54.7% had ovarian cancer and 15.5% were preoperative. Even though 73.2% of patients named cancer as a risk factor for COVID-19, only 17.5% were more afraid of COVID-19 than their cancer condition, with advanced age (>70 years) as the only significant risk factor for that. Overall, 71% were concerned about cancer progression if their treatment/follow-up was cancelled/postponed. Most patients (64%) had their care continued as planned, but 72.3% (n = 892) said that they received no information around overall COVID-19 infection rates of patients and staff, testing or measures taken in their treating hospital. Mean HADS Anxiety and Depression Scores were 8.8 (range: 5.3-12) and 8.1 (range: 3.8-13.4), respectively. Multivariate analysis identified high HADS-depression scores, having experienced modifications of care due to the pandemic and concern about not being able to visit their doctor as independent predictors of patients' anxiety. INTERPRETATION: Gynaecological cancer patients expressed significant anxiety about progression of their disease due to modifications of care related to the COVID-19 pandemic and wished to pursue their treatment as planned despite the associated risks. Healthcare professionals should take this into consideration when making decisions that impact patients care in times of crisis and to develop initiatives to improve patients' communication and education.

COVID-19/prevention & control , Genital Neoplasms, Female/psychology , Genital Neoplasms, Female/therapy , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Surveys and Questionnaires , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Anxiety/psychology , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , Depression/psychology , Europe , Fear/psychology , Female , Humans , Middle Aged , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Young Adult