Journal of Assisted Reproduction and Genetics

, Volume 24, Issue 12, pp 639–644 | Cite as

Too old for IVF: are we discriminating against older women?

  • Norbert GleicherEmail author
  • Andrea Weghofer
  • David Barad
Symposium of the Aging Ovary


In vitro fertilization (IVF) in women of advanced age (>42 years) represents only 5%, a comparatively minute part, of the national IVF experience in the United States (US). In view of evolving population dynamics, it, however, also represents proportionally a rather quickly expanding patient need. Because of access restrictions at many IVF programs, this market does not live up to its potential. As best demonstrated by the 2004 US National Summary and Fertility Clinic Report, which for the first time reported pregnancies and births above age 45 year, IVF in women of advanced reproductive age represents a cutting edge area of interest for improving current IVF outcomes. Access to IVF should, therefore, not be withheld based on female age and/or baseline FSH levels. Instead, a definition of acceptable minimal pregnancy and life birth rates could be used to define the limits of offered access to IVF, independent of age and/or baseline FSH levels.


In vitro fertilization (IVF) Age Follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) Diminished ovarian reserve Premature ovarian aging Oocytes Embryos 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Norbert Gleicher
    • 1
    • 5
    • 6
    • 7
    Email author
  • Andrea Weghofer
    • 2
    • 5
  • David Barad
    • 3
    • 4
    • 5
    • 6
    • 7
  1. 1.Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive SciencesYale University School of MedicineNew HavenUSA
  2. 2.Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Allgemeines KrankenhausVienna University School of MedicineViennaAustria
  3. 3.Department of Epidemiology and Social MedicineAlbert Einstein College of MedicineBronxUSA
  4. 4.Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Women’s HealthAlbert Einstein College of MedicineBronxUSA
  5. 5.The Center for Human Reproduction (CHR) New YorkNew YorkUSA
  6. 6.Foundation for Reproductive MedicineChicagoUSA
  7. 7.Foundation for Reproductive MedicineNew YorkUSA

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