Research at the University of Newcastle is examining how cancer patients and their partners cope when diagnosed as infertile.
Jodie Fleming is studying her Professional Doctorate in Clinical and Health Psychology under the supervision of Dr Martin Johnson from the School of Psychology.
"The World Health Organisation estimates one in 10 couples worldwide experience infertility through a variety of causes," Ms Fleming said.
"Aggressive chemotherapy to treat cancer has been linked to infertility through premature menopause, gonadal failure or the location of the tumour.
"Up to half of the world's cancer patients report anxiety and depression. Being diagnosed with infertility on top of dealing with cancer can be very distressing for cancer patients and their partners, who already have a greater than average need for social support to cope with the disease."
Ms Fleming said the research would help health professionals working with cancer patients and their partners to deliver tailored support information.
"We know that males and females use different coping strategies when they are experiencing psychological distress. Women usually have huge social networks, while men tend to rely only on their partner.
"Because of this, men and women seek out information in different ways. Their needs are also different if they are the cancer patient as opposed to the partner of a cancer patient.
"What we want is the best outcome for the couple. We need to ensure they are getting the information and support they need, when they need it, and in the way they wish to receive it."
The research project is looking for couples between the ages of 18 and 45, where one partner has, or has had, cancer.
The couples will be asked to individually complete three questionnaires, taking approximately 30 minutes in total. All information collected will be completely anonymous.
To participate please email Jodie Fleming.