Introduction: The diagnosis of breast cancer during pregnancy (BCP) represents a unique challenge to the patient, her family and the treating physician. The proper management of this critical clinical situation is crucial, and requires a multidisciplinary approach. A proper understanding of the safety of chemotherapy during pregnancy is a vital step to avoid detrimental consequences on the mother and the fetus.Areas covered: The aim of this article is to review the available evidence on the safety of chemotherapy administration in managing BCP.Expert opinion: The rule of thumb of chemotherapy - avoiding first trimester exposure and starting therapy in the second trimester - can be considered applicable for classic agents that are used in managing pregnant breast cancer patients. Anthracycline-based regimens are considered the standard of care in managing BCP. Recently, a growing amount of data suggests the safety of taxanes during pregnancy. Pregnancy in cancer patients should be considered as "high risk": once the systemic treatment is initiated, regular fetal monitoring is highly recommended. Emerging data are available on the relative long-term safety secondary to anthracycline exposure during pregnancy. A continued monitoring of the health of individuals with prenatal exposure to chemotherapy into adulthood is recommended for the possible occurrence of long-term side effects.
- Breast cancer during pregnancy
- Fetal and child monitoring
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pharmacology (medical)