Purpose: To evaluate the infertility rate in patients with germ cell tumors receiving chemotherapy with cisplatin, etoposide (VP-16), and bleomycin (PVP16B). Patients and Methods: Thirty patients were evaluated. All patients had undergone chemotherapy with two to four cycles of PVP16B. A single semen analysis was performed 24 to 78 months following initiation of chemotherapy. All 30 patients were continuously disease-free. Eight of these patients had also undergone nerve-sparing retroperitoneal lymph node dissection (RPLND). Results: The median sperm concentration was 33.9 x 106, with a median volume of 3.2 mL. The median total sperm count was 86.4 x 106. Oligospermia (< 40 x 106 total sperm count) was found in 13 patients (43%), including six (20%) who were azoospermic. There was a high incidence of morphologically abnormal sperm, with only one patient having more than 50% normal spermatozoa. Only 13 patients (43%) had sperm motility greater than 50%. Five patients had positive semen antisperm immunoglobulin G (IgG). Eight patients fathered children, including three with documented oligospermia. Conclusion: Patients with germ cell tumors successfully treated with PVP16B chemotherapy are at substantial risk for persistent semen abnormalities. However, some patients with oligospermia will slowly recover and others are still capable of reproductive capacity despite continued oligospermia.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research