News ........................... 2-9, 28 Woman gives birth here aged 54

Irish Examiner - - News - Lynne Kelle­her

The old­est mother to give birth in Ireland over the past decade was 54 years of age, fol­low­ing a trend of celebri­ties giv­ing birth in their 50s.

The old­est mother to give birth in Ireland over the past decade was 54 years of age.

CSO fig­ures have re­vealed the num­ber of moth­ers giv­ing birth af­ter the age of 45 has more than dou­bled over the past decade.

It shows an in­creas­ing num­ber of Ir­ish women are hav­ing ba­bies af­ter their 50th birth­day, with the num­ber go­ing from just four in 2007 to 13 in 2016 al­though the high­est num­ber was 17 in 2015, ac­cord­ing to the lat­est CSO fig­ures.

Pop su­per­star Janet Jack­son got world­wide at­ten­tion when she gave birth to her first child, a baby boy, at the start of this year, seven months af­ter cel­e­brat­ing her 50th birth­day.

The trend for older moth­er­hood is bol­stered by people liv­ing longer and new ad­vances in fer­til­ity treat­ments with Ir­ish women able to use healthy donor eggs of women in their 20s from coun­tries like the Czech Repub­lic, Spain and the Ukraine to have a safer preg­nancy in their late 40s and, even, at the age of 50.

The sharp rise in Ir­ish women over 45 giv­ing birth is un­der­lined by CSO fig­ures of 118 in 2007 to 295 in 2016.

The IVF Cube Clinic in Prague re­vealed Ir­ish moth­ers have given birth at the age of 50 af­ter re­ceiv­ing donor eggs in re­cent years.

In those cases, the births were all as a re­sult of donor eggs with the em­bryo trans­fers all done the day be­fore the 50th birth­day.

In 2016, the in­ter­pre­ta­tion of the law was changed in the Czech Repub­lic and women now must have their last em­bryo trans­fer the day be­fore their 50th birth­day.

The vast ma­jor­ity of Ir­ish pa­tients vis­it­ing the Prague clinic are over the age of 35, when the qual­ity of a woman’s eggs starts to de­cline.

Out of the 670 pa­tients from Ireland over the past six years, 43% were aged be­tween 41 and 45.

Moth­er­hood in mid­dle age is a trend which has thought to have been in­flu­enced by a string of high-pro­file preg­nan­cies among the world’s most fa­mous women in their late into their 40s.

Halle Berry’s said it was a com­plete shock and a mir­a­cle preg­nancy when she de­liv­ered, at age 47, her son Maceo.

Thelma and Louise star Geena Davis had a daugh­ter at 46 and twins at 48, while su­per­model Iman was 45 when she gave birth to her daugh­ter with David Bowie. Dr Hana Vis­nova, med­i­cal di­rec­tor of the IVF Cube fer­til­ity clinic in Prague, said donor re­pro­duc­tive eggs has “rev­o­lu­tionised” fer­til­ity treat­ment for women look­ing to de­lay moth­er­hood un­til later in life.

She said: “The age of a woman is closely linked to the qual­ity of re­pro­duc­tive eggs. As a woman gets older, the qual­ity starts to de­cline and fer­til­ity prob­lems tend to become more com­mon.

“Many women are now choos­ing to de­lay start­ing a fam­ily, only to re­alise their chances of be­ing able to con­ceive nat­u­rally have started to de­cline rapidly.”

Dr Vis­nova said: “The egg bank has rev­o­lu­tionised fer­til­ity for older women.”

Janet Jack­son and son Eissa Al Mana. The singer gave birth aged 50.

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