Nov 03, 2022

What Age Is Too Late for IVF? (Your Questions Answered)

Age is the single most important factor when it comes to conceiving and having a healthy child. This applies to both women and men. Fertility is highly complex, so it’s essential to understand what age is too late for IVF and how age, fertility, and pregnancy impact one another.

This guide walks you through all the key details you should know to give yourself and your loved one the best chance at having the family you deserve. If you have any questions along the way, reach out to the Future Family team.

Age, Fertility, and Pregnancy

Age and fertility play vital roles in conceiving. The best age for conceiving is in your 20s—this is a woman’s optimal reproductive years.

Egg supply decreases throughout a woman’s life. Around age 35, it begins to decline more rapidly. Additionally, around this same time, egg quality begins to more rapidly decline.  This can lead to an increased incidence of miscarraige due to chromosome abnormalities.

Let’s take a look at the statistics:

  • For couples in their 20s to early 30s, one in four women gets pregnant in any single menstrual cycle.
  • By age 40, roughly one in 10 women get pregnant during each menstrual cycle.

Is IVF Possible After 40? What Age Is Too Old for IVF?

IVF is possible after the age of 40. But as mentioned above, as women get older, the quality and quantity of their eggs decline, leading to lower odds of success.

Maternal Age

By age 45, a woman’s fertility has declined to a point where getting pregnant becomes particularly challenging. Women over 40 have a 7.9% chance of a successful live birth from IVF.

Women who get pregnant later in life also carry a higher risk of complications. For instance, pregnant women over 40 have an increased risk of preeclampsia—a serious blood pressure condition generally occurring after 20 weeks of pregnancy.

This is why women in their 40s may decide to use an egg donor—this increases the likelihood of a live birth by almost 50%.

Paternal Age

Like women, men’s fertility begins to decline as they get older. But it doesn’t decline as predictably as women. Studies illustrate IVF success rates start to decline when a man is over 51. Not to mention, 20% to 30% of infertility cases are attributed to male infertility.

More research needs to be done on male fertility. Still, studies indicate semen quality diminishes with age, and some fertility centers may want to consider setting an age limit for sperm donors. If you’re interested in learning more, read about sperm fertility tests.

IVF Success Rates by Age

To further expand on the above, here are the IVF success rate statistics across various ages per the CDC. These numbers reflect those who used their own eggs and who may or may not have previous IVF experience:

  • 49.7% of women younger than 35 years of age
  • 44.8% of women aged 35 to 37
  • 39.6% of women aged 38 to 40
  • 22.6% of women over 40

For more information, read our guide on IVF success rates by age.

Additional Insights on Successful IVF Later in Life

Rest assured, there are ways to give yourself the best chance at conceiving at a later age via IVF.

More Egg Retrievals

You may need to plan on doing more than one cycle of IVF to achieve pregnancy/live birth.

The younger you are, the fewer IVF rounds you will likely need for a successful pregnancy.

Lifestyle/Diet

Sticking to a Mediterranean diet promotes uterine health and hormone levels and can also enhance the likelihood of IVF success.

Here are some IVF dietary tips to incorporate into your lifestyle:

  • Folic acid: Research links dietary folic acid with IVF success. Foods with folic acid include asparagus, corn, avocado, and whole grains.  Folic acid is also incredibly important during pregnancy.  Deficiencies in folic acid during pregnancy can lead to spina bifida.
  • Zinc: Zinc promotes hormonal balance in the female reproductive system. Zinc-rich foods include nuts, dairy, potatoes, and seafood.
  • Healthy fats: Studies note monounsaturated fats may help support IVF success. Healthy fats are found in soymilk, tofu, chia seeds, and fatty fish.

Begin Your IVF Journey with Future Family

Every person’s IVF journey is unique. The Future Family team strives to find the best care for you. We believe starting a family should not be stressful, so we specialize in IVF financing.

To ensure your IVF journey is stress-free and supportive, contact us. In the meantime, look into our FAQs to learn more.

Learn how Future
Family can help you

Flexible financing plans and dedicated support for IVF and egg freezing