Deciding to undergo in vitro fertilization (IVF) treatment to become pregnant is a big decision, especially when weight the costs versus the potential success. You may be wondering what the success rate is for women in their 20s.
Fortunately, there are some variables, such as age, that help boost IVF success rates for women 29 and younger. However, understanding the actual success rate can be confusing simply because there are many factors that play into just how well IVF may work for you.
Why women 25-29 may be candidates for IVF
Because women in their 20s are in the prime of their childbearing years, many people are surprised to hear that they may be candidates for IVF. There are a handful of reasons why some women choose to utilize IVF or other fertility procedures when it comes to getting pregnant in their 20s, including:
Irregular ovulation or another cause of infertility: Women in their 20s who have had difficulty getting pregnant and have sought out help from a fertility specialist may have identified an issue with their reproductive system or fertility calendar that prevents ovulation or conception.
Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, issues with the fallopian tubes, or an unusual fertility cycle can make it difficult for women of this age to conceive. It’s not uncommon for women in their 20s to utilize a variety of fertility treatment options, including IVF, to become pregnant.
Fewer eggs than expected: The average woman is born with approximately 7 million eggs, but by the time she hits puberty, only an estimated 300,000 will remain. While this statistic is pretty assuring that you’ll likely have enough eggs by the time you’re ready to have kids, it’s not a hard and fast rule. The rate at which your eggs decreases depends on a host of factors — such as age,
An issue with a partner’s fertility: Contrary to popular infertility myth, difficulty getting pregnant isn’t solely caused by a woman. Many heterosexual couples struggle with fertility because the male partner has a low sperm count, or issues with sperm motility. Fertility specialists often utilize IVF in these cases, because they can ensure that an egg is fertilized and that the female partner’s fertile window isn’t missed — thus speeding up the conception process.
Being in a same-sex relationship: Many same-sex couples choose to have children, and those who choose to become pregnant and carry their own babies may choose to use donor eggs or sperm. But, a newer process called Reciprocal IVF allows both parents-to-be in a female LGBTQ relationship to have a genetic tie to their baby. Reciprocal IVF uses the eggs of one partner to create embryos that will be transferred and embedded in the second partner’s uterus.
Preventing a genetic disease: For some women or couples choosing to have a baby, knowledge of a family genetic disorder can raise questions about whether it’s ethical to risk their future child’s health. IVF is a tool that can be used for future parents who have identified the high chances of passing on a genetic mutation, because donor eggs or sperm can be used to conceive a baby who won’t carry genetic markers for that health issue.
Understanding IVF success rates for women in their 20s
Before wading into the sometimes confusing world of IVF success rates, it’s first important to understand your chances of becoming pregnant naturally. For women with no identified reproductive health issues, the chances of becoming pregnant in any given month are 20 percent. But when it comes to determining your odds of getting pregnant through IVF, the statistics aren’t so cut and dry.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) research based on fertility clinic reports suggests that women under age 35 who choose to undergo IVF with fresh (not frozen) eggs or embryos have the highest chance of becoming pregnant compared to women over age 35. Research shows:
- Women under 35 who use IVF to become pregnant, and have never had children before, conceive in 32 percent of cases
- 37 percent of IVF cycles for women of this age group result in pregnancy for women who have one previous child
- 34 percent of IVF cycles for women in their 20s with two or more children are successful
While that number seems low, further research from the CDC and the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology (SART) shows that despite the odds, IVF is often very successful for women who are in their 20s. In fact, between 40 and 43 percent of embryo transfers result in a successful pregnancy and live birth.
Because of the cost of IVF, many hopeful parents wonder if they can get by with one round of treatment. According to CDC data, the chances of a woman under the age of 35 getting pregnant from one round of IVF comes in at 52 percent.
How does this impact your personal odds?
Because every fertility case is different, the only person who can truly determine if IVF will work for you is your fertility doctor or specialist. Their prior successes and experiences in treatment, along with factors such as your health and why you are choosing IVF, greatly impact how well IVF may work for you.