men who have had to resort to the techniques of assisted reproduction to have offspring seem to have a higher risk of prostate cancer early-onset compared with those who achieve fatherhood in a natural way, concludes a study published today by "The BMJ".
The findings suggest that these men may benefit from early detection and long term monitoring of prostate cancer.
prostate cancer and male infertility are disorders are very common, affecting approximately 10% and 8%, respectively, of all men in western societies. As prostate cancer and many forms of infertility are related to the male sex hormone, has investigated a possible link between them. But until now, have not drawn firm conclusions.
prostate cancer and male infertility are disorders are very common, affecting approximately 10% and 8%, respectively
Now, researchers from the University of Lund (Sweden) have compared the risk and severity of prostate cancer among men who become parents for the first time through assisted reproduction and those conceived naturally.
Their findings are based on data from national registries of more than one million births in Sweden during 1994-2014 in the same number of parents.
The parents were grouped according to fertility status by mode of conception: 20.618 (1.7%) for in vitro fertilization (IVF), 14.882 (1.3%) by injection of sperm (ICSI) and 1.145,990 (97%) for natural conception. The average age for childbirth was 37 years for the parents treated with IVF and ICSI, and 32 years for parents who conceived naturally. The cancer registries were used to identify new cases of prostate cancer up to 20 years after delivery.A million live births in Sweden during 1994-2014 in the same number of parents
After adjusting for factors that might have affected the results, such as age and level of education, the researchers discovered that those who became parents through IVF and ICSI had a significantly increased risk of prostate cancer than the men who gave birth to children naturally.
Among the men who achieved paternity in a natural way, 3.244 (0,28%) were diagnosed with prostate cancer, compared with 77 (0,37%) in the group of IVF and 63 (0,42%) in the group of ICSI.
The risk of prostate cancer, early onset (diagnosed before age 55 years) was also particularly high for men who have children through ICSI, a technology that is used for men with the most severe forms of infertility.
These increased risks remained after excluding men with a previous diagnosis of cancer, or who received testosterone replacement therapy. This is an observational study and, as such, could not establish the cause, and the authors point out some limitations. For example, not included infertile men who could not beget children, and they may have an increased risk of prostate cancer than those who were able to become parents.
in Addition, with an average age of 45 years at the end of the follow-up, these results cannot quantify the risk of cancer of the prostate throughout life.it is Still unclear how the male infertility could be linked biologically with the risk of prostate cancer, but abnormalities in the chromosome And linked both with infertility such as prostate cancer, are a possibility
however, they conclude: "The men who achieved parenthood through assisted reproduction techniques, particularly through ICSI have a higher risk of prostate cancer of early onset and, therefore, constitute a risk group in which the evidence and the careful follow-up to long-term prostate cancer may be beneficial."
it is Still unclear how the male infertility could be linked biologically with the risk of prostate cancer, but abnormalities in the y chromosome associated both with infertility such as prostate cancer, are a possibility, say researchers in an editorial linked to.
however, warn that the screening is controversial due to the lack of survival benefits and the harms of overdiagnosis and overtreatment, which may follow a screening test positive.
"In the absence of a mechanism of action, plausible or causal evidence, to justify the detection of prostate cancer in all infertile men it is difficult to –write-. However, additional research on the possible future complications of male infertility would be welcome by patients and will help doctors to advise all infertile men about their future health".Updated Date: 26 September 2019, 16:02