In vitro fertilization, or IVF, is a highly successful assisted reproductive technology. Over several stages of treatment, IVF assists with conception to maximize the chance of pregnancy. Although IVF can address a wide range of infertility problems, it is still important to consider a person’s age when determining IVF candidacy.
Many women worry they may be too old for IVF treatment, but this procedure can be successful pretty late into life. When determining the maximum age for IVF treatment, there are several factors to consider. Doctors at The Center for Fertility and Gynecology help their Los Angeles, CA, Tarzana, CA, and Bakersfield, CA, patients understand how age affects IVF and when it is an appropriate time to undergo IVF treatment.
Why Does Age Matter?
The goal of IVF treatment is to address common infertility problems so that individuals have the chance to conceive and carry a pregnancy to term. Although many of the issues that can interfere with conception are bypassed by the IVF process, age still plays a factor in the success of treatment.
For IVF to be a success, it is important to have a good supply of healthy eggs. The quality and quantity of a woman’s eggs are known as her ovarian reserve. What many women do not realize is that a woman is born with all the eggs she will ever produce and release. As a woman ages, the number of eggs naturally diminishes. Similarly, the quality of remaining eggs goes down as a woman gets older. Because age has such a large impact on a person’s ovarian reserve, it must be taken into account when determining IVF candidacy.
How Old Is Too Old for IVF?
There is no official age at which IVF is no longer a fertility treatment option. However, though the maximum age for IVF treatment may vary from clinic to clinic, most fertility specialists do not recommend undergoing IVF treatment past the age of 45, at least not if the patient plans to use her own eggs. But even this is just a general recommendation. Each woman has her own timeline in regards to reproductive health. Some women have a diminished ovarian reserve in their mid 30s, while other women have healthy eggs up to the age of 50. Fertility testing is a much better indicator of IVF candidacy than a person’s age.
Can I Undergo IVF after the Age of 45?
As society’s priorities have shifted, more women are choosing to put off having children until later in life. For those women who are over the age of 45, or those with a diminished ovarian reserve, it is natural to wonder what fertility options may be available to them. In many cases, IVF can still be a viable option. However, women will need to consider undergoing treatment using donor eggs, rather than their own. IVF with donor eggs significantly expands the window of time in which IVF treatment can be successful.
If you have questions about the IVF process, and whether it is a viable solution for your fertility concerns, the doctors at The Center for Fertility and Gynecology would be happy to provide you with more information. Send us a message online, or call (818) 881-9800, to schedule a consultation at our fertility clinic.