One of the many consequences of delaying the start of childbearing is that the amount of women requiring reproductive medicines has increased over the last years.
Women over the age of 40 who decide to become mothers may find a series of limitations. For this reason, specialists in the field of reproductive medicine have focused on improving the different treatments with the aim of allowing this group of patients to become pregnant.
Apart from achieving pregnancy, in this age group there’s a higher miscarriage rate, which means that the experts face an added problem. In the treatments performed, they need to be sure that the embryos transferred are good quality embryos, able of producing an evolutive pregnancy, so that a healthy child can be born.
Benefits of using PGD
In this cases, one of the best assisted reproduction techniques is the usage of methods, such as the pre-implantation genetic diagnosis, which applied to patients when they have a minimum of 6 good quality oocytes, allows to duplicate the likelihood of success of the treatment.
Several investigations taken in relation with advanced maternal age have shown that techniques, such as in vitro fertilisation are more effective than others, such as Intrauterine insemination (IUI), which increases the birth rate. It is also worth noting that, on the other hand, it is very important to perform a correct ovarian stimulation in order to standardise the hormone levels, which are usually altered over the years. This may also improve the results. Other techniques, such as oocyte or embryo vitrification, help increasing the chances of getting an embryo transfer.
PGD has not been entirely free of controversy about its results. However, thanks to the combination of an adequate selection of patients, advances laboratories, and specialised embryologists, it is possible to double the success rate.
Sometimes, advanced maternal age is associated to other potential health problems that can affect the whole process of in vitro fertilisation. Specialists can face other challenges in relation with this group of women, such as obesity, smoking, and a lifestyle which can modify the results of the fertility treatments.