Infertility Treatment Options for Women Over 40

Women under 30 have a 20% chance of getting pregnant during a menstrual cycle. By the time you reach 40, however, these odds drop to less than 5%. That’s because your body goes through natural age-related changes, including having: 

While it can be harder to conceive after you turn 40, you don’t have to give up your dreams of having a baby. Dr. Andrew L. Loucopoulos understands that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to fertility issues. 

That’s why he offers a personalized approach to reproductive medicine and women’s health at his intimate clinic on Manhattan’s Upper East Side in New York. If you’re over 40, Dr. Loucopoulos offers numerous solutions for infertility.

Focus on healthy habits

You may look and feel your best, but your ovaries could be telling a different story. Staying in the best of health can help keep your hormones balanced, which increases your chances of conceiving. Dr. Loucopoulos often suggests eating a healthy diet, avoiding caffeine and alcohol, and exercising for 30 minutes on most days of the week. 

You might also benefit from taking certain supplements that can reverse age-related reproductive decline, like folic acid or coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10). And, don’t underestimate the importance of reducing stress in your life. Dr. Loucopoulos recommends incorporating relaxation techniques, like meditation, yoga, tai chi, and acupuncture.

It’s all about timing

If you’ve been trying to get pregnant based on when you ovulate, you should revisit your calendar. In your younger years, your best chances of conceiving are the 12th to 14th days of your 28-day cycle. 

As you get older, however, it’s common to start ovulating earlier in your cycle, so your best chances of becoming pregnant could range from the ninth day to the 12th day. 

Dr. Loucopoulos can offer tips to help you determine exactly when you’re ovulating each month. These strategies often include taking your temperature, monitoring your cervical mucus, or using an ovulation kit. 

Medical treatments

When you’ve tried without luck to conceive for at least three months, Dr. Loucopoulos performs a comprehensive exam to look for any issues that might be affecting your fertility. This includes checking your hormone levels and looking for blocked fallopian tubes. 

Based on his findings, Dr. Loucopoulos might recommend assisted reproductive technologies to increase your chances of conceiving, like intrauterine insemination (IUI), in vitro fertilization (IVF), or egg donation.

Intrauterine insemination

IUI is a simple and low-tech fertility treatment that places sperm cells into your uterus during your ovulation window. In many cases, you take special medications leading up to this procedure that stimulate your ovaries to release an egg. 

To increase your chances of conceiving, sperm used for this treatment undergoes a “sperm washing” procedure designed to collect a highly concentrated quantity of healthy sperm cells. This technique makes it easier for sperm to fertilize your egg.

In vitro fertilization

During IVF, Dr. Loucopoulos takes eggs from your ovaries and fertilizes them with sperm in a lab. After 3-5 days, he implants the resulting embryos directly into your uterus. To have IVF, you typically take fertility medications in advance that stimulate egg production. Maximizing the number of mature eggs available for retrieval and implantation is important because not all of them survive the process. 

Egg donation

If it doesn’t seem likely that you can conceive with your own eggs, Dr. Loucopoulos might recommend egg donation. This approach uses an egg donated from another woman that you carry in your uterus. This infertility treatment has a 60-70% success rate for women in their 40s, and new evidence shows that nurturing a donor egg in your body plays a role in its genetic development. 

That’s because the environment where you nurture an embryo has an influence on which genes turn on and off in a developing embryo, even if the egg doesn’t have your biological make-up.

To learn more about infertility treatments after 40, call the Andrew L. Loucopoulos, MD, PhD, practice, send us a message here on the website, or use the convenient booking feature to request an appointment online.

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