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IVF options for ladies over 40(9 Posts)
We have recently started exploring the idea of IVF, either natural/low stim or more aggressive protocols. I have read a lot about the likes of Lister and ARCG as well as "softer" approaches like Create Fertility. The majority of the comments regarding the milder approaches, confirm that this is more relevant to women with reduced ovarian reserve.
Just out of curiosity, when they say "low" ovarian reserve, what sort of figures are we discussing here?
My last FSH was 5.7U/L and last E2 was 84 pmol/L, LH at 3.1 U/L. I have no idea how to interpret those stats though as my GP did not bother to elaborate. I am 42 though and with a history of unexplained secondary infertility and recurrent miscarriages. Does anyone else in this group from all the very knowledgeable ladies have any insight regarding the above figures as I can't really find any answers via Dr Google!
thank you all in advance
Your reserve (indicated by fsh) should be fine. It can change from cycle to cycle though. Your egg quality may be more of an issue (as indicated by multiple early miscarriages). Egg quality is linked most closely to age and there isn't a test for it. Ubiquinol in pretty high doses can help to a certain extent.
Donor eggs completely overcome the issue of your egg quality.
I think they do look at your AMH level. Have you actually been diagnosed with low ovarian reserve? Most women over 40 don’t have low reserve, but may have poorer egg quality.
Thank you both for your input. I have not been diagnosed with low ovarian reserve, on the contrary I have been told the opposite for my age. It is more the quality that worries me and whether ivf with my own genetic material is even worth considering.
I did not mention it before but my first unexplained miscarriage was at week 20 and the post mortem showed no abnormality whatsoever. Second mc was close to week 10 and no found defects either. The last one was probable a chromosomal one at 6/7 weeks. I think my issues are more of an autoimmune nature and with a now slightly advanced age I wonder whether we should count our losses and go straight to egg donation
@Bubaki76 - there are things you can do to improve egg quality ready for an IVF cycle. I am 40 and our first cycle failed in June with 2AB/C embryos transferred out of 6 fertilised eggs (nothing good enough to freeze) the follow up consultation was full of doom and gloom about my egg quality and almost put me off trying again. today I have just received the news that our second cycle has been successful with an amazing 9dp5dt beta HCG level of 597 (which more than likely means twins). This time we had 12 eggs with two 5AA embryos transferred and 2 4ABs frozen. The difference was remarkable. These are the thingsi have been doing for the past 3 months which I truly believe have improved my egg quality - I hope this is of help to you:
Acupuncture every other week (once per week in run up to cycle starting)
Daily fertility yoga
Ubiquinol - at least 300mg daily
5g raw maca powder daily
5g spirulina daily
1000iu vitamin D spray daily
Regular vigorous exercise ( maintain BMI in healthy range) but this must stop once treatment starts
1 month of testosterone gel in the lead up to cycle starting
Reduce stress as much as possible - i left my horrifically stressful job and went part time
Increased protein intake ( I’m vegetarian and was definitely not getting enough)
All of this made a massive difference to my egg quality. Obviously there’s a long way to go yet before i have a healthy baby (or two!) in my arms but we are certainly off to a far better start than last time.
I hope this is useful to you.
@Bubaki76 I meant to add that should really get an AMH test done - this will give you a far better idea of how you are likely to respond to IVF treatment than FSH/LH.
@CritterTamer, wow, this is truly commitment right! It’s wonderful to see that it actually pays off!
I will most definitely try and follow your advise although I don’t think I will be able to do everything in your list. I have tried weekly acupuncture and in the past and not only did it help reduce stress but it also helped regulate my cycle (and resulted in my second pregnancy-which didn’t go to plan but that is certainly not related to the acupuncture in any way)
Incidentally I have bought both spirulina and maca powder and haven’t gotten around to taking them. Uniquinol is presumably coQ10?
I have been taking a huge mix of vitamins and antioxidants in various permutations over the past 4 years, mostly a large dose of Folate, coQ10, vitD, iron, omega 3, B12 complex, selenium for my thyroid, good quality pro cultures complex amongst others. My pill case is rattling!! But sometimes it feels like it makes no difference at all as I don’t check any fertility levels before/after to see a difference. I suppose it’s different when you are preparing for IVF and not simply trying to conceive naturally- which hasn’t happened in 3 years now, despite 4 previous pregnancies (first one only resulting in a healthy living child)
Thank you for all your advice, it is appreciated and inspiring
Also @CritterTamer, congratulations on the amazing results second time around. Should not be long now!
Hi ladies not sure if I’m on the right thread here I’m quite new to this!
I had first round ivf last year, which produced 6eggs which all fertilised and 2 good quality 1of which a 9cell at day 3 I was told almost top quality. Unfortunately on day 3when i was supposed to have the transfer I had some bleeding and was advised not to go ahead and wait for day 5 but they didn’t make it, I was devastated. We are considering trying again albeit privately again so saving like mad but also wondering if we are letting our hearts rule our heads; I am 40 now and AMH was 1.2, my husband has low sperm count so it was ICSI but they had to pick the best of a small bunch that were motile.
Going by the statistics from the consultant and being told the odds are stacked against us we really not sure whether it’s worth another attempt.
I have been taking DHEA (on the consultants advice), COQ10, DHA and pregnacare Pre conception ever since the attempt 5months ago.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated x