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Advanced Age and Infertility

Age and Infertility

Insights from fertility clinics reveal that female infertility comprises 40% of cases, male infertility another 40%, and common infertility, 20% of all infertility cases. Contrary to popular belief, infertility affects both men and women.Many men continue to be fertile well into their 50s and 60s, whereas most women face challenges in conceiving past the age of 35. Some factors are exclusive to the gender while some are common; with the most common being age. Egg and sperm quality and quantity diminish as individuals grow older and we can read about it as we move further into this article that has been put together by highly experienced IVF specialists at ART Fertility Clinics.

How aging impacts female fertility

The number of eggs and their quality determine the potential for pregnancy, this is called the ‘Ovarian Reserve’. It is interesting to know that the number of eggs decreases with age. However, this varies as per individuals. Some women get pregnant well into their 40s while some begin losing their fertility in their 20s itself. The eggs lose their reproductive potential with age and this is termed as a Diminished Ovarian Reserve (DOR).

Aging is the primary inevitable cause of DOR and unfortunately cannot be reversed as it is a natural and biological fact of life. Coupled with age, smoking, heavy drinking, obesity and other poor lifestyle choices expedite failing fertility in women. 

Inherited genetic disorders like Fragile X Syndrome and other chromosomal abnormalities also contribute to DOR and there are no treatments available for these diseases.

As mentioned earlier, no treatment can actually slow DOR. Fortunately for women with DOR who wish to conceive, Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) has the answer.

Advanced age impacts male fertility too

We are aware of the fact that men produce new sperm each day and can go on for a lifetime. However, the quality of sperm a man produces does begin to decline after the age of 40, i.e. they have less healthy sperm than younger men. This happens because the number of sperms and the motility (the sperm’s ability to move towards the egg) decreases and declines with age.  Erectile dysfunction also occurs and progresses with age. 

Ailments like STDs, tumors, testicular injuries, and genetic problems can cause male infertility as well. Poor lifestyle choices like smoking, sedentary lifestyle, and obesity also reduce sperm quality. Fortunately, with the advancement of science, there are many treatments available for cases of male infertility. Both IVF and ICSI are viable options and have seen great success in the most challenging cases too.

The biological clock ticks for both men and women. Until recently, the options available were few but with Advanced Reproductive Technologies the chances have been improved. Expectant couples should consult a fertility specialist or a specialized fertility center to realize their dream of parenthood.

ART Fertility Clinics is a leading IVF institution that runs three state-of-the-art IVF clinics in the Middle East – Abu Dhabi, Dubai in the UAE, and Muscat in Oman. ART Fertility has the highest success rate in the region of over 70% and world-renowned IVF specialists with years of global experience work together to deliver success for couples.