IVF IS A NUMBERS GAME
There has been much confusion, debate and backlash about the purported success rates of IVF in Australia.
Last year, The Medical Journal of Australia published comprehensive independent research on IVF success.
It followed more than 56,000 women who began IVF in Australia and New Zealand over a course of treatment up to eight cycles or the birth of a child. The data did not include women using donated eggs or embryos.
Not surprisingly, it found the younger women are when they start the IVF process, the greater their chance of producing a ‘live birth’.
Those aged 30-34 have a 43 per cent chance after one cycle, compared to 40-44 year olds who have an 11 per cent chance.
Logically, the greater the number of cycles, the higher the chances of success. Women who begin the process at age 40-44 have a success rate of between 21 per cent (conservative) -34 per cent (optimal) at six cycles.
Women who start trying under 30 can have a success rate between 69-93 per cent after six cycles and women 30-34 had only marginally lower rates than these.
But the researchers warn their analysis does not take into account individual factors that affect the chances of IVF success, including how long a couple had been trying to conceive, body fat levels and ovarian reserve, a measure of the reproductive potential of the ovaries.