chapter  11
Suffering in Local Worlds: Oncological Discourses, Cancer and Infertility in Puerto Rico
ByKAREN E. DYER
Pages 17

Camila was diagnosed with breast cancer at age 22 in San Juan, Puerto Rico. She had married her childhood sweetheart 18 months earlier and subsequently became pregnant with their fi rst son. While breastfeeding, she found a large lump, which turned out to be an aggressive cancer. She immediately went into treatment with a physician she now declares was incompetent. She received chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery to remove the mass. These treatments, unbeknownst to her then, included a class of chemotherapies called alkylating agents, which are known to cause infertility in the men and women who take them.