BACKGROUND: The aim of this study was to evaluate the long-term gonadal sequelae after treatment for childhood Hodgkin's lymphoma with combination chemotherapy, using up to date fertility parameters and andrological evaluation, including for the first time inhibin B. METHODS: There were 56 male patients treated from 1974-1998 for childhood Hodgkin's lymphoma with combination chemotherapy ABVD or EBVD (adriamycin/epirubicin, bleomycin, vinblastine, dacarbazine) with or without MOPP (mechlorethamine, vincristin, prednisone, procarbazine) with the intention to avoid radiotherapy. These men were studied 15.5 years (range 5.6-30.2 years) after cessation of therapy. Serum follicle stimulating hormone (FSH), luteinizing hormone (LH), inhibin B, testosterone, sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG), sperm concentration and sperm DNA integrity were determined. RESULTS: In men treated with MOPP, median FSH and LH were significantly increased (P < 0.001) and inhibin B (17.5 versus 143 ng/l; P < 0.001) and sperm concentration (1.05 versus 49.5 × 106/ml; P < 0.05) were significantly decreased compared with patients treated without MOPP. The number of MOPP courses was significantly correlated with FSH and inhibin B levels. Only inhibin B showed an independent correlation with sperm concentration (r = 0.86; P < 0.001). CONCLUSIONS: The use of MOPP chemotherapy causes permanent gonadal damage in the far majority of male survivors of childhood Hodgkin's lymphoma and inhibin B is the most valuable serum marker for gonadal function.

Fertility, Hodgkin's lymphoma, Inhibin B, Long-term follow-up,
Human Reproduction
Free full text at PubMed
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

van Beek, R.D, Smit, M, van den Heuvel-Eibrink, M.M, de Jong, F.H, Hakvoort-Cammel, F.G.A.J, van den Bos, C, … de Muinck Keizer-Schrama, S.M.P.F. (2007). Inhibin B is superior to FSH as a serum marker for spermatogenesis in men treated for Hodgkin's lymphoma with chemotherapy during childhood. Human Reproduction, 22(12), 3215–3222. doi:10.1093/humrep/dem313