Age and Fertility - Chandler AZ

Does Age Affect Fertility? – Fertility Clinic Chandler

In our modern society, many people wait to have children until they’re in their 30s or even 40s. While this may help you achieve your career or social goals, many couples unfortunately find that when they’re finally ready to have children, it’s harder than they expected. The incidence of infertility in America is rising, with nearly 20 percent of all couples currently affected. Age has a significant impact on fertility. At our fertility clinic near Chandler, we’ve helped many women who are dealing with the impact of increasing age on fertility.

The Effect of Age on Ovulation

Not every act of unprotected intercourse leads to a pregnancy, even in a woman with normal fertility. In fact, for a healthy woman who’s 30 years old and trying to get pregnant, about 20% of those women will achieve pregnancy during that menstrual cycle. That’s why we don’t diagnose a couple as infertile until they’ve been trying for at least a year (if the woman is younger than 35).

However, the chances drop with every passing year, especially after the woman hits age 35. By age 40, only 5% of women who are trying to get pregnant during a menstrual cycle will achieve it. In other words, 3 out of 4 women who would have gotten pregnant during a cycle when they were 30 no longer get pregnant during that cycle when they’re 40. Unfortunately, many younger couples aren’t aware of this information when they’re making decisions about having children.

The Effect of Age on Egg Quality

A woman’s body produces fewer eggs as she ages, but that’s not the only effect of aging. The eggs that an older woman produces are also more likely to have genetic problems. This leads to an increasing risk of Down syndrome and other genetic diseases in the babies born to women in their 40s. It also means that IVF is less likely to be successful in these women. Even when eggs can be harvested successfully, the chances of the eggs becoming fertilized and successfully growing into an embryo are substantially lower in women in their late 30s and early 40s. By the age of 43, a woman has only a 5% chance of becoming pregnant through IVF using her own eggs. This is why more woman are becoming interested in freezing their eggs in their 20s, so they can use the highest-quality eggs to get pregnant later, when they’re ready.

The Effect of Age on the Uterus

The news about aging and fertility isn’t all bad. While age has a significant impact on the ovaries, the uterus remains relatively unaffected by aging. That means that a woman in her 40s is likely to be able to successfully carry a pregnancy to term. However, because she may not have enough of her own eggs, or they may not be healthy enough, older women tend to have much more success using donor eggs. The older the woman, the more likely it is that we’ll suggest using donor eggs for your fertility treatment. When the woman is age 45 or older, donor eggs are effectively the only option.

The Effect of Age on Men’s Fertility

While not as dramatic as the changes in women, men also experience a decline in fertility as they age. The quality of sperm declines as a man ages, with the changes typically becoming noticeable in his 60s. In some older men, medical problems (such as diabetes or high blood pressure) could also interfere with erection or ejaculation, making it more difficult for his female partner to get pregnant. At our fertility clinic near Chandler, serving communities throughout Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas, we’ve successfully treated many men with low fertility.