Assessment of ovarian reserve in adult childhood cancer survivors using anti-Müllerian hormone
BACKGROUND: The aim was to assess possible treatment-induced gonadal damage in a cohort of adult female childhood cancer survivors (CCS) using anti-Müllerian hormone (AMH), the most sensitive marker of ovarian reserve. METHODS: A total cohort of 185 survivors was compared with 42 control subjects. The median follow-up time was 18.1 years (range 4.1-43.2 year). RESULTS: Median AMH concentrations in the analysed cohort were not different from controls (median 1.7 versus 2.1 g/l; P = 0.57). However, AMH levels were lower than the 10th percentile of normal values in 27 (49/182) of our survivors. In addition, 43 (79/182) had AMH levels lower than 1.4 g/l, a previously established cut-off value which predicts ongoing pregnancy after assisted reproduction. There were no differences in AMH levels in subgroups classified according to disease. However, survivors treated with three or more procarbazine containing chemotherapy cycles had significantly lower AMH levels than controls (median 0.5 g/l; P = 0.004). Also survivors treated with abdominal or total body irradiation had significantly lower AMH levels than controls (median < 0.1 g/l; P < 0.001). CONCLUSIONS: AMH can be used to identify subgroups of CCS at risk for decreased fertility or premature ovarian failure. In these survivors, options for fertility preservation should be considered prior to starting treatment since they may be at risk for poor chances of pregnancy after assisted reproductive treatment.