There is a conflict between the biological and chronological age to become a mother in our present-day society. Due to several reasons, the motherhood’s experience is more postponed every day; consequently the ovary loses its ability to produce oocytes which is essential to achieve a pregnancy and give birth to a healthy child.
In the past a 40-year-old woman was considered an old woman while nowadays she’s still a young woman. We have our goals today and want to pursue a professional career; we look for emotional and economic stability and we want to find the right partner so we can start planning to become mothers over the age of 30 years old.
Faced with this situation, many women are forced to rely on egg donors. Becoming a mother at 40 years old is very common in Spain.
Approximately 8,3% of births are from women over 40-year-old and the figures are increasing.
Actually, a woman can naturally get pregnant during any of her menstrual periods but starting from 35 years old the quantity and quality of eggs significantly decrease. Unfortunately, eggs age. From a biological point of view, female’s fertility remains untouched until 27 years old and then it starts to decline; the ovarian reserve is subjected to a drastic decline at 35 years old.
Every woman is born with a definite ovarian reserve which is estimated with a million of oocytes. We lose one thousand eggs per each menstrual cycle, in this way when we reach 35 years old there is just 10% ovarian reserve left.
At the age of 40 the possibility to have a child in a natural way is about 5% per each menstrual period.
Over 40 years old, more than 50% of eggs are altered in the chromosomal aspect. Starting from 42 years old it drops to 75%
IVF with egg donors is based on the usage of healthy eggs donated by anonymous donors which are fertilized by partner’s or anonymous donor’s sperm. In this case, the pregnancy rate which is based on each embryo implantation is approximately 53% starting from 40 years old.
Fortunately, this technique provides better pregnancy success rates for those women who don’t want to give up to their dream to become a mother.
Furthermore, there are important advantages for the future mother because she doesn’t need any stimulation via hormones and at the same time she has a lower risk of a miscarriage for chromosomal disorders related to the patient’s age.
Nowadays, egg donation represents a hope for each different patient’s profiles such as: over 40 year-old women, premature menopause, young women affected by ovarian failure, women who lost their ovaries due to endometriosis or cancer in that area or women who were subjected to IVF treatments unsuccessfully.
At the beginning, relying on an anonymous donor can concern the patient but it has to be pointed out that it is very safe and an efficient option. Since the 1990s, the egg donation is used as a satisfactory technique for couples who couldn’t achieve the pregnancy in a different way.