Dr. Pasquale Patrizio, professor at Yale School of Medicine and director of the Yale Fertility Center, and colleagues said more women are coming to the fertility clinic at age 43 or older expecting pregnancy can be instantly achieved -- and they're disappointed to learn that it can't be done easily.
"There is an alarming misconception about fertility among women," Patrizio said in a statement. "We are really seeing more and more patients 'upset' after failing in having their own biological child after age 43 so we had to report on this. Their typical reaction is, 'what do you mean you cannot help me? I am healthy, I exercise, and I cannot have my own baby?'"
The growing popularity of assisted reproductive technologies has given women the impression female fertility may be manipulated at any stage in life, Patrizio said.
"The Society for Assisted Reproductive Technologies said the number of in-vitro fertilization cycles resulting in pregnancy in women age 42 and older mostly remained static at 9 percent in 2009," Patrizio said. "If pregnancy is achieved at an older age, women then face higher risk of pregnancy loss, birth defects and other complications."
The findings were published in Fertility and Sterility.
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