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anyone have a healthy baby after adriamycin

Posts: 9
Joined: Nov 2011

I posted awhile ago about pregnancy and possible surrogacy,

I had Hodgkin Lymphoma when I was 18, I am now 25. I am healthy overall but pretty much have been bombarded with all the possible long term effects from chemo/radiation. Acquired hypothyroidism, thickening on my lungs, iron deficiency, a clotting disorder, tachycardia and lowered ejection fraction, I also have a lot of damage to my esophagus and small intestine from radiation.

I want nothing more in life than to be able to have my own children. My OB/GYN says I should really look into surrogacy (i am a nurse pracitioner, I can't afford that!) my PCP says I will be "super duper" high risk and the cardiologist doesn't even like to bring up the topic. I was told by a maternal fetal doctor that I should have an ablasion done on my SA node before I consider pregnancy, has anyone had this done? Did it help with the heart "issues" after adriamycin? My oncologist seems to be the only one on my side but from her standpoint she is only considered about my hypercoagulability, which I will need lovenox during pregnnancy, I can handle that.

So please if anyone was discouraged from having a baby after ABVD but did so and had a healthy pregnancy please give me tips! I want so badly to make my husband a father, he was with me while I was sick (we had only been together a year) and married me despite knowing what my follow ups, medical bills and emotional state will be, I want to be able to give back to him.

cathyp's picture
Posts: 373
Joined: Dec 2009


I had a baby after my mantle radiation(1989) in 1993 for Hodgkins Lymphoma.  I remember back then asking my docs if I need to be careful in delivery because of possible damage to my heart from the rads.  They said absolutely not! After giving birth w/o any problems, it was determined I had a recurrence while pregnant.  I had ABVD(1994) and gave birth again in 1996.  I was 36 at this time and the doctors poo-poo-ed my concern of cardiac problems during delivery.  I didn't have a problem but my daughter was born with one push 5 minutes after arriving at the hospital.  Come to find out now, I should have been considered high risk and have cardiac monitoring.

Now, some doctors are more informed on the damaging effects of chemo and/or radiation, many of them cropping up years after treatment.  All of the effects you have I have too.  My resting heart rate is at 100 and this is extremely common for HD survivors.  If you could, I would seek out a Long Term Follow-up Clinic that sees Hodgkin's Survivors.  I live close to NYC so I go Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.  Later tonight I will provise you with the links to search for a Survivor Clinic and also the guidelines for Survivors.  IIRC there is a part for pregnancy after treatment too. 

Hang in there!  My daughters are 17 and 20!  I'll give you the info later when I have more time to find the links!


Posts: 9
Joined: Nov 2011

Thank you! it makes me feel much better!

I would absolutely love to try and see a long term follow up clinic, that would be wonderful. I live in Orlando, so a somewhat large market. It's nice to hear that people can have healthy pregnancies even with the adriamycin

onlytoday's picture
Posts: 608
Joined: Jun 2010

Donna, (love your name)

Do you go to Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa?  Don't know if they have long term follow up care but it is a well known, highly regarded cancer center.  Known as the Sloan Kettering of Florida!  Just thought I'd through this in.  My brother went there when he had cancer.

Best of luck to you!


another  Donna  :)

Posts: 9
Joined: Nov 2011

I work for MD Anderson so moffit unfortunately is not covered by my insurance, I was treated at Florida hospital though since I was young and on my parents insurance. I had no idea about long term follow up clinics. I will have to check around the area and ask my oncologist

cathyp's picture
Posts: 373
Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 76
Joined: Nov 2010

My daughter had ABVD for Hodgkins two years ago.  She gave birth to a healthy, beautiful baby girl in December.  The only thing that her doctors told her was that she may have trouble getting pregnant.  I was reallly worried when I found out she was expecting a baby because of the treatment (she had radiation as well) she had.  But thank God both her and her daughter are fine. 

Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3's picture
Max Former Hodg...
Posts: 3660
Joined: May 2012


I'm glad about her good news, and the wheezing issue apparantly having turned out to be nothing serious.


Posts: 1
Joined: Sep 2013

Hey there,

DONT be discouraged AT ALL. I was diagnosed with stage 2B Hodgkins Lymphoma at 21 YO. I had a one year old at the time and in nursing school.

I had 8 cycles of ABVD and I reacted to one of the treatments, so they gave me a different chemo for the last three.

My lymphoma returned within six months of my PET scan ( which was COMPLETELY clean)

SOOOO, with urgency, they threw me back into treatment for salvage chemotherapy which ended with a stem cell transplant ( bone marrow transplant) and 4 weeks of radiation to my chest.

I was told I would have no chance of conceiving naturally and was also told if I wanted more children, I would have to adopt or do ovum donation with my husbands sperm.

2 years to the month, I was pregnant with my now almost 2 year old. She is PERFECT in every way...no health issues at all.

When she was 6 months old, I found out I was pregnant again........my son is now 8 months old, and again, NO health issues.

I am only 5 years in remission this year.

My oncologist told me there is absolutely NO CORRELATION between pregnancy and increased risk in return of cancer.

Because lymphoma is not a reproductive cancer, the influx of pregnancy hormones do not play a role in this !




I to have thyroid issues, raynauds syndrome, SOB etc all from chemo and radiation........

Just keep taking good care of yourself and hope for the best!


If its any consolation, I saw a naturopath whom helped me prepare my body for pregnancy. Within 5 1/2 months I was preggers ;)

Posts: 23
Joined: Feb 2013

I had two Biological children after ABVD treatment for stage 3A, HD. They are now nineteen and twenty two. I was told I would never have children. But there has been loads of new information since than, and many have had children follwing treatment. I was thriteen at time of diagnosis. Now about to be 40.



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