Delay in child bearing is becoming an increasing trend in women. According to demographics, there is a rise in the number of women in their 40’s becoming first time mothers. Such a trend has presented a challenge for fertility experts: increasing success rate of ART treatment in women who are over the age of 40.
Effects of chronological age on biological aging
Chronological aging doesn’t always coincide with biological ovarian age. There are numerous reports where ovarian aging is shown to be independent of chronological aging. But, advancing age in women is associated with decline in ovary quality, specifically, reproductive competence and reserve of ovaries. The complexity of ovarian aging as an independent phenomenon is gradually being unraveled. In some women, the inability to conceive could be due to damaged oocyte and nothing age related. But, the rate of genetic defects likes aneuploidy (presence of extra chromosome) and miscarriage increases with chronological age.
ART options available for women in their 40s
Little or no information is revealed on clinical evaluation of fertility in women who’re in their 40s. Categorization of such cases is under ‘unexplained infertility’. It is most likely that tarnished infertility is a function of reduced oocyte quality and number. But, age related disorders like endometriosis and fibroids could also contribute to infertility.
ART options are discussed with such women after exhaustive investigation for infertility cause. The course of action in such cases involves sequential ovulation-induction practices combined with IUI for half a year and then IVF.
IVF in the 40s
A substantial women population opts for intracytoplasmic sperm injection, the reason being that such treatment with or without ICSI offers the highest success rate in the case of unexplained fertility. Through IVF, common male and female obstacles are easily overcome. Success rate of IVF in older women has increased thanks to advancement in IVR technology.
Assessing the success rate of IVF in older women can only be done through comparison of available literature. There are insufficient reports on the effectiveness of IVF and IUI in older women. However, there areAlth sufficient reports on delivery rates in both treatments. IVF offers a higher delivery rate of 20-30 percent as compared to 10-15% offered by IUI. IVF is always chosen as the preferred choice for ART in older women. Although the live birth rate is significantly lower in mothers over 40s as compared to younger patients, IVF remains the favorite ART technique.
During the time you’re trying to conceive, work on preparing the body to accommodate the growing changes by maintaining a healthy lifestyle. In conclusion, there are women in their 40s who conceive naturally or IVF assisted. Such mothers do raise healthy and bright children. But, at the same time, setting realistic expectations is crucial. While one woman enjoys immediate conception through a single cycle of IVF, another may require multiple approaches or cycles. It is best to consult and discuss with a fertility expert, for they can predict chances of success after considering patient history.