Fertility Drugs and Cancer
To date there have been no studies that identify a link between fertility drugs and cancer.
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) recommends only selective ovarian cancer screening in women. They state that annual ovarian cancer screening is justifiable only for a small well-defined segment of the population: women who have two second-degree relatives or one first and one second degree relative who have had ovarian cancer. The NIH, however, has not specifically looked at the issue of women who take fertility medications and they suggest more studies are needed in this subgroup.
Notwithstanding the above, as a precautionary measure, HRC recommends that patients who have had treatments with fertility drugs should have ovarian cancer screening performed once a year in much the same way as they have routine Pap tests done. Ovarian cancer screening includes pelvic examination, transvaginal ultrasonography, and possible measurement of serum levels of the tumor marker CA-125.
Studies have shown that several treatments and factors can reduce the risk of ovarian cancer. For example, pregnancy has been shown to reduce the risk of developing this disease by 40%. Recent studies suggest that tubal ligation, hysterectomy, and surgically removing the ovaries after completing child bearing for women of high risk (such as those who have relatives who have had ovarian cancer) may also reduce the risk of developing this disease. Multiple studies have demonstrated a 40-50% decrease in ovarian cancer in women who use oral contraceptives.