(HealthDay News) — Treatment of lymphoma patients with the gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonist (GnRHa) triptorelin plus norethisterone does not reduce the rate of chemotherapy-induced premature ovarian failure (POF), according to a study published online Nov. 5 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Isabelle Demeestere, M.D., Ph.D., of the Université Libre de Bruxelles in Belgium, and colleagues conducted a one-year follow-up of a multicenter, randomized, prospective trial involving 84 patients with lymphoma, aged 18 to 45 years of age, to assess the efficacy of the GnRHa triptorelin plus norethisterone versus norethisterone alone in preventing chemotherapy-induced ovarian failure.

The researchers found that after six months of follow-up there was no difference between the groups in the mean follicle stimulating hormone values. After one year, there was no significant difference in the rate of POF between the GnRHa and control groups (20 and 19 percent, respectively). Ovarian function was completely restored for more than half the patients in each group, and higher anti-Müllerian hormone values were seen in the GnRHa group versus the control group. Adverse events were similar between the groups, except for metrorrhagia, which was seen more often in the GnRHa group.

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“In conclusion, this prospective study involving patients with lymphoma did not provide evidence that GnRHa is effective in preventing POF,” the authors write. “However, it suggests a long-term benefit of GnRHa on fertility of patients who spontaneously experience restoration of ovarian function. Until long-term results confirm the benefit of GnRHa to improve future fertility, the treatment should not be administered to prevent POF apart from in experimental protocols.”

One author disclosed financial ties to Ipsen.

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