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Advanced Maternal Age and Egg Quality

Catherine McDiarmid-Watt | Monday, May 28, 2018 | 0 comments

Image: Yvonne, by Duane J, on MorgueFile
Photo credit: Yvonne, by Duane J
A woman who is over age 43 or 44 years old, will often be turned away from any chance at assisted reproductive technology because of her age, and therefore poor state of her ovaries.

She may fail to respond as favorably to the gonadotropins as her younger counterpart because her eggs have become less responsive to hormonal stimulation.

She may produce few numbers of eggs, whose outer capsule is tougher and thus less capable of fertilization.

Those eggs which do become fertilized may have more inclusions during early embryologic development, meaning there are more waste products put out by the mitochondria.

Less make it to the blastocyst stage, even fewer are capable of implantation and fewer yet make it through the full embryonic development.

That is why a woman over forty is statistically less likely to give birth and is encouraged to find alternative ways of becoming a mother. She will be told she has poor quality eggs.

Her reproductive endocrinologist will strongly suggest she consider using a younger donor's eggs.

This makes her chances of having a baby, and thus her RE's [Reproductive Endocrinologist] statistics, much higher.

The reason for the lower chances of assisted reproductive success in older women is because the only portion of the hormonal process that is manipulated is the last few weeks of this many months' process.

Massive doses of gonadotropin hormones are given to the women in order to (hopefully) recruit more follicles.

This doesn't, however, make them of better quality.

Experience has shown that if the hormonal system is in perfect working order and a woman has clockwork menstrual cycles, no matter what her age, a healthy egg can be released on time.

It then has a good chance of becoming fertilized, implanting, and making it through embryologic development to become a child.

Read more: Advanced Maternal Age and Egg Quality

Image: The Fertility Guide: A Couples Handbook for When You Want to Have a Baby (More Than Anything Else), by John C., II Jarrett, and Deidra T. Rausch. Publisher: Health Pr (September 1998)The Fertility Guide: A Couples Handbook for When You Want to Have a Baby (More Than Anything Else)
by John C., II Jarrett and Deidra T. Rausch

-- This Fertility Guide provides a concise, sensible, appropriately scientific, but yet easily understood approach to modern fertility diagnosis and treatment.

Dr. Jarrett and Dr. Rausch have translated their vast and highly successful clinical experience into a must for the couple who want to have a baby more than anything else.

The most important contribution of this book is that it translates the high tech into common sense and fills an important void in the specialty... -- E.P. Peterson, MD, Past President of American Society of Reproductive Medicine, Clinical Professor Dept OB/GYN University of Michigan.

Image: Buy Now on Amazon.comPaperback: 200 pages
Click to order/for more info: The Fertility Guide

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About Catherine: I am mom to three grown sons, two grandchildren and two rescue dogs. After years of raising my boys as a single mom, I remarried a wonderful man who had never had a child of his own. Unexpectedly, I found myself pregnant at 49!
Sadly we lost that precious baby at 8 weeks, and decided to try again. Five more losses, turned down for donor egg, foster care and adoption due to my age and losses - we have accepted that there will be no more babies in our house.

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