You may have heard about the new predictor tool for IVF/ICSI which has been developed recently which is available through the University of Aberdeen website.
It uses data from the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority which keeps records of all cycles of treatment carried out in the UK, to aim to give a picture of your individual chances of having a baby after IVF/ICSI treatment,
The reporting of this has been analysed by NHS Choices which points out that there are some gaps in the data which the researchers themselves have acknowledged as it doesn’t account for the woman’s body mass index (BMI), whether she smokes and how much alcohol she drinks.
Despite these limitations, it is certainly a very useful tool and one which may help many couples get some kind of realistic idea of the chances of an IVF cycle working. Of course, the experience of each individual couple is always different and this doesn’t allow you to include any detailed medical data either, but it does give a broad picture view which may prove very helpful.
There has been a lot of discussion recently about age and infertility, with some claims that it’s not as relevant as we’ve been led to believe. I was interested to see some new research from the University of Aberdeen which makes it very clear just how closely IVF success is linked to age. Interestingly, the research found that although the amount of time that a couple had been trying to get pregnant before treatment is relevant to the outcome, it doesn’t have nearly as much impact as age.
The researchers looked at data for more than 120,000 women, and found that women’s chances of success with IVF start to decline once they reach their mid 30s, but are then sharply reduced from the age of 37. For those who did get pregnant, the changes of having a miscarriage were also considerably higher in women of 38 and above.
You can read more about the research from the team headed by Professor Siladitya Bhattacharya here at www.abdn.ac.uk/news/