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Can IVF Be Done After Menopause

Can IVF Be Done After Menopause

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IVF has been a boon for several couples who have been unable to get pregnant naturally. Most times, doctors recommend women undergo IVF during their 20s or 30s. However, due to certain circumstances, you might only be able to conceive when you are nearing your menopause. In such cases, you might have to undergo fertility treatments to safely get pregnant and give birth to a healthy baby. In this article, we will discuss how IVF can help you achieve pregnancy, the challenges you might face, and the possible results you can expect from undergoing IVF after menopause.

Can A Woman Get Pregnant After Menopause?

Yes, it is possible for you to get pregnant after menopause. Though natural pregnancy will not be possible, with the proper treatment and guidance, you can get pregnant through fertility treatments like IVF or ICSI.

However, you should also realize that undergoing IVF treatment at this age can be more complex than others.

During your 20s or 30s, your ovarian reserve and reproductive health might be high. So, although you have certain fertility issues that require IVF, with the proper treatment, you might still have a higher chance of success.

However, after your 40s, your reproductive health, ovarian reserve, and the quality and quantity of eggs required for ivf will not be present. The chances of miscarriage will also be high.

So, if you are near to or past your menopause and wish to undergo IVF to get pregnant, there can be certain complications. However, it does not mean that you cannot get pregnant.

There is evidence of several women who have undergone IVF post-menopause and still gave birth to a healthy baby. It all depends on your health and the quality of your treatment.

How Can IVF Help Menopausal Women?

IVF is a viable option for women who are past their menopause. Below are some aspects of IVF that can help you get pregnant even after menopause.

Hormonal treatments to ensure pregnancy

Usually, your uterus will shrink and become resistant to estrogen after menopause. This will make it difficult to become pregnant and carry the pregnancy till childbirth.

During IVF, you will be given a series of hormonal injections (including progesterone and estrogen) that will ready your uterus for pregnancy. The typical dosage will be higher than what will be administered to younger women.

Using frozen eggs or donor eggs

After menopause, your ovaries won’t produce any new eggs that can be retrieved and used for fertilization. You can use your frozen eggs or embryos if you have already preserved them. This also ensures that you are the biological mother of the baby.

If you don’t have frozen eggs, you can use a donor egg for your IVF treatment. Only the highest quality egg will be chosen here, so you don’t need to worry about quality. However, you might be able to be the biological mother of the baby.

These two are the major benefits of undergoing IVF if you wish to get pregnant after menopause. Apart from this, the expert care and guidance you will get from your fertility doctor are also other benefits of IVF treatments.

Challenges Of IVF After Menopause:

IVF has some complications, even if it is done on women in their 30s. So, it is inevitable for you, who is past menopause, to have certain risks and complications. Below are some of the challenges you and your fertility doctor might face during IVF.

The availability of eggs for fertilization

As discussed above, your body won’t produce eggs after menopause. You might have to use previously frozen eggs or donor eggs. This might be the case for your partner, too.

Lower success rates

Even in younger women with minor fertility problems, the success rate of IVF is only around 50–60%. This rate will decrease exponentially when you are in your 40s after menopause.

Higher risks involved in the pregnancy

You will be at a higher risk of contracting certain pregnancy complications like gestational diabetes, multiple births, high blood pressure, etc.

More expensive

Since your IVF treatment involves a longer hormonal therapy period and should be taken more care of than others, your IVF treatment might be more expensive than those undergone by younger women.

Possible Results Of IVF After Menopause

Though a bit complicated, with the proper treatments, you can definitely get pregnant even after menopause. Here are some of the possible results you might encounter with IVF after your menopause.

Positive pregnancy

Although success rates are comparably lower, you can still achieve a successful pregnancy with proper care and treatments.

Multiple IVF cycles

Since your success rate is lower, you might have to undergo multiple IVF cycles to become pregnant and give birth to a healthy baby.

Miscarriage

The risk of miscarriage is higher when you undergo IVF above 40 years of age. This can also be a possible IVF outcome.

Health complications

After menopause, your body and mind will be weak and susceptible to complications like gestational diabetes, high blood pressure, etc.

Conclusion

As you can see, IVF after menopause might be a bit tough, but there are definitely chances of you having a successful pregnancy and having a healthy baby.

The most crucial thing here is to improve your health and listen to your fertility doctor’s consultation, if you have any concerns or doubts regarding your pregnancy, it is better to contact your fertility hospital than wonder what to do on your own. Remember, you are not alone in your journey.

FAQs

There are very low chances of naturally restoring your fertility after menopause. However, you can choose options like frozen eggs or donor eggs to get pregnant. You just need to undergo more vigorous IVF treatment than your younger counterparts.

Yes, there are chances of conception after menopause. Though natural pregnancy is not possible, you can still undergo fertility treatments like IVF or ICSI and achieve pregnancy.

Yes, most women who wish to get pregnant after menopause undergo IVF to increase their chances of having a successful pregnancy. 

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