Effects of Age on Success

Proud member of the Zouves Fertility Center family.

Proud member of the Zouves Fertility Center family.

How successful is IVF with fresh embryos?
The chances of success with IVF are directly related to the age of the woman who provides the egg.

  • Under 35 years of age: Almost a 50% chance of a birth with one cycle
  • 35 to 39 years of age: 35-40% chance of a birth with one cycle
  • 40+ years of age: 25% chance of a birth with one cycle

Success may be further affected by the condition of the uterus, especially the endometrial lining and also by the number of eggs that are produced, often referred to as the ovarian reserve. The results quoted by clinics will also vary depending on a patient’s medical characteristics and treatment approaches.

What is the success rate with frozen/thawed embryos?
As with IVF involving fresh embryos, the age of the egg provider is the most important predictor of outcome. However, frozen embryo transfers have now surpassed fresh embryo transfers in success rates, allowing us to delay the transfer of the embryo until all negative effects of the fertility stimulation drugs have left the body and synchronize with the patient’s natural ovulation cycle.

Read more about IVF with Delayed Transfer.

What are options for women over 40 years of age?
While the quality of a woman’s own eggs declines sharply after 40, Zouves Fertility Center will never turn away a prospective patient because of their age. While a 40-year-old egg provider can have as high as a 25% chance of a birth with one single fresh cycle of IVF, as she approaches 45, even the most aggressive IVF treatment using her own egg will yield no greater than 1% chance of a birth.

If using one’s own eggs is not an option, ZFC will help you to determine the next best course of action, such as egg donation.

In my last IVF cycle, I was told that my eggs were of poor quality, and I was hospitalized with severe abdominal pain and swelling post-procedure. Can there be another issue?

Egg quality is usually driven by the age of the egg provider. Although it is possible for a young woman to have poor quality eggs, this would be uncommon. It sounds as though the patient above has a very good egg reserve and was overstimulated developing ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHHS). Depending on the choice of protocol for stimulation, there can appear to be an egg problem when it is more likely that the problem was created by the stimulation and the attempt to avoid overstimulation. The ideal stimulation method for patients with high egg reserve would be the antagonist protocol with a Lupron trigger instead of the traditional human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG).

Read about Ovarian Syndrome (OHSS).

I have endometriosis, does this affect my fertility and can it affect success with IVF?
Endometriosis is a condition where cells that usually remain confined to the cavity of the uterus grow outside of the uterus, usually on or in the ovaries and on the surface of the pelvic cavity between the uterus and the rectum. Endometriosis can cause pelvic pain and may also decrease the chances of natural conception by about 33%. Patients with endometriosis who require IVF still have the same chances of a successful outcome as healthy patients of the same age, as long as immunological factors that can accompany endometriosis are identified and treated appropriately.

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