When 24-year-old Ashley Flynn was diagnosed with colorectal cancer she was thinking about how to save her life. She was not thinking about having children. After meeting with her oncologist, she was referred to The University of Kansas Health System Fertility Clinic and met with Dr. Courtney Marsh and her team.
Dr. Marsh explained how she would preserve Ashley’s eggs before she underwent radiation therapy … treatment that would have possibly damaged tissue and kept her from being able to have children.
Dr. Marsh treats fertility preservation as a high priority for someone who has just been diagnosed with cancer and encourages patients to take time to preserve their fertility before cancer treatment begins. Often a patient’s cancer requires aggressive treatment that can start the next day, so Dr. Marsh’s team moves quick when treating women who are about to undergo radiation and chemo treatments. The University of Kansas Health System Fertility Center is one of the only in the region to perform what’s called ovarian tissue preservation which allows for fertility preservation in much younger cancer patients. By freezing ovarian tissue, they can help preserve the fertility of young women who have not yet experienced puberty. Dr. Marsh and her team also treat men.
Now cancer free, Ashley and her husband Shawn have two healthy boys. Ashley highly recommends being an advocate for your own health and fertility. Seek answers and know your options.