Sexuality, intimacy and fertility

Cancer can affect your sexuality in physical and emotional ways. The impact of these changes depends on many factors, such as treatment and side effects, your self confidence, and if you have a partner.

Although sexual intercourse may not always be possible, closeness and sharing can still be part of your relationship.

If you are able to have sex, you may be advised to use certain types of contraception to protect your partner or avoid pregnancy for a certain period of time. Your doctor will talk to you about the precautions to take. They will also tell you if treatment will affect your fertility permanently or temporarily. If having children is important to you, talk to your doctor before starting treatment.

Call 13 11 20 for free copies of Sexuality, Intimacy and Cancer, Sexuality, Intimacy and Cancer and Emotions and Cancer, or download digital copies from this page.

This information was last reviewed in January 2017
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Sexuality, intimacy and cancer
Learn more about the ways cancer and its treatment may affect your sexuality, and how to deal with these challenges