IVF Maximum Age
People today often delay having children until they have achieved other life accomplishments. Unfortunately, getting pregnant in your later years doesn’t always come as easily as one would hope. When people have difficulty conceiving, fertility treatment can help. IVF, in particular, offers a high rate of pregnancy success.
IVF assists with the stages of conception to improve the chance of pregnancy, despite infertility issues. However, even IVF has its limits, and many patients want to know if there is a maximum age for IVF treatment. Here, Dr. Janelle Dorsett, of The Centre for Reproductive Medicine in Lubbock, TX, discusses how age affects fertility and whether someone can be considered too old for IVF treatment.
How Does Age Affect Fertility?
It is good not to be defined by one’s age, but there are realistic effects of aging that need to be considered when it comes to certain life decisions. Fertility is one area of a person’s health that is directly impacted by age, especially when it comes to female fertility.
Every woman is born with the number of eggs that she will have for her entire life. Once a woman reaches her reproductive years, these eggs start being released. As a woman ages, her reserve of eggs is diminished, so that once she decides to become pregnant, her ovarian reserve may already be low.
Female fertility can be further impacted by the quality of a woman’s eggs. Even if a woman maintains a good reserve of eggs, the quality of the eggs may not support a healthy pregnancy. A woman’s egg quality can begin to diminish as early as her 30’s. By the time a woman is in her 40s, the quality and quantity of her eggs can make it especially difficult to conceive.
Is There a Maximum Age for IVF?
Although female fertility can be compromised by age, there is no standard regarding the maximum age for IVF treatment. Instead, IVF candidacy is based on a fertility evaluation at our Lubbock fertility practice. If a woman maintains a healthy supply of eggs, and those eggs appear to be of good quality, IVF treatment can be successful well into a woman’s 40s. However, it is important to acknowledge that the rate of IVF treatment success does decrease as a woman ages, with the highest rates of success being among women who are under the age of 35.
Extending the Maximum Age for IVF Treatment
Generally speaking, women in their mid to upper 40s may not be considered the best candidates for IVF treatment, due to the possibility of a diminished ovarian reserve. However, there are ways to extend the upper age limit for IVF treatment and increase the chance of treatment success.
Those of our Lubbock patients who are looking into IVF treatment after the age of 42 may want to consider using previously frozen eggs, using donor eggs, or working with an egg donor and gestational surrogate. Our fertility specialists can recommend appropriate IVF techniques based on each unique situation.
Get in Touch
If you are ready to start a family and are worried that it may be too late, you could still be an ideal candidate for IVF. To learn more about this assisted reproductive technique, send us a message online, or call The Centre for Reproductive Medicine at (806) 788-1212 to schedule a consultation with Dr. Janelle Dorsett.