Above all else, there’s one thing that truly influences whether your IVF treatment is a success. Whilst health, weight, lifestyle are all thought to play a part, the main thing which affects your outcome is your age.
Age is the biggest factor in IVF success rates. In women aged 35 and under, the rates are significantly higher than in women over the age of 40. The reason is simply down to nature. As we age, our fertility declines. Women are actually the most fertile in their 20s, but by the time you may be ready for a family in your 30s or 40s, your fertility is not what it was.
And so as more couples delay parenthood due to financial or career circumstances, the use of fertility treatment is only set to increase. Unfortunately, many couples only realise the impact time has when they try to have a baby. You may spend months trying to get pregnant with no success. Tests show neither of you have an underlying medical reason for not conceiving – it simply isn’t happening. You’re one of the many couples who have ‘unexplained infertility.’
The fact that people are having to go through IVF largely because of ignorance or in the mistaken belief that it is a fail-safe guarantee to having children in older years needs to change.
If more people were educated about the relationship between age and fertility, the heartbreak of not getting pregnant and having to go down the route of assisted reproductive technology could be avoided. IVF was originally designed to help those who couldn’t get pregnant because of medical reasons, not because they’d just waited too long to have a baby.
No one willingly chooses to have to go through IVF instead of conceiving naturally, but it’s sadly becoming the reality for many people who simply don’t realise the impact of age on their ability to have children.
Last updated: 27th September 2011