new test may warn women that their child bearing years are ending

  1. http://kdka.com/health/fertility.men....2.983685.html
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    About oramar

    Joined: Nov '98; Posts: 7,097; Likes: 5,244
    returned nurse

    15 Comments

  3. by   freewilly4
    Not a crystal ball but for women waiting this can be a helpful tool/test in preparing themselves for childbearing.
  4. by   WildcatFanRN
    Just what I need, even more proof that the clock is ticking.....lol
  5. by   DeLana_RN
    It measures levels of AMH, or anti-mullerian hormone, and inhibin-B. They decrease as a woman approaches menopause. So researchers at the University of Michigan looked into whether the levels of the two hormones could accurately predict the timing of a woman's last menstrual period.

    They found that levels became very low or virtually undetectable four-to-five years before her final period. So, the test should show when a woman has four-to-five years left to have a child.

    "It's not precise," Ashton told co-anchor Erica Hill, "but it does give us a general range."

    Some doctors are calling it an excellent predictor, and saying it will become a standard test for women.
    This is so wrong and misleading. Women's fecundity, or ability to conceive, decreases dramatically many years before menopause (the final period). Perimenopause starts about a decade before menopause and during this time conception becomes increasingly unlikely. Anyone who believes that women can still easily conceive with their own eggs in their forties is dangerously misinformed.

    I learned this the hard way when seeking the advice of a reproductive endocrinologist (RE), or fertility specialist, when I was 39 years old. He said that conception in one's late thirties (!) and beyond is unlikely and my best option would be donor eggs from a young woman. I declined, but it took no less than 5 IVF cycles to finally conceive our twins when I was 41 years old. After the age of 41-42 conception with one's own eggs is highly unlikely because almost all eggs at this age are chromosomally abnormal. The celebrities who had children in their mid-forties and beyond used donor eggs, although this is rarely if ever mentioned.

    Articles like this one are highly misleading and give women who delayed childbearing a false sense of security - "Oh, I can conceive right up to menopause" (which occurs on average at age 51) - this is just not true!

    I therefore fail to see the usefulness of this test. Instead, better public health education regarding women's fertility would be much more effective.

    DeLana
  6. by   Spidey's mom
    On the flip side DeLana - there are many women who do have babies in their 40's w/o donor eggs and the children are not "abnormal".

    I'm not saying it is likely - but to make blanket statements is not helpful either.

    I had my last child at 43. He is a healthy normal 7 year old.

    I'm very happy for you that you had your twins!

    steph

    I just have to add that I found it very insulting for the doc to push genetic testing and amniocentesis on us by the way.
  7. by   FireStarterRN
    Your chances of genetic abnormalities skyrockets in your 40s. The eggs start to deteriorate, apparently. Better to have children younger.
  8. by   Spidey's mom
    Quote from FireStarterRN
    Your chances of genetic abnormalities skyrockets in your 40s. The eggs start to deteriorate, apparently. Better to have children younger.
    Granted, risks increase. But to scare women to death is wrong too.

    I'm all for education. Not scaremongering.

    I experienced that when we found ourselves preggers in our 40's. I got a call at work after I had the usual blood tests early in pregnancy telling me that the likelihood was that my child probably had Down's Syndrome. After a long talk with a physician we realized someone had jumped the gun looking ONLY at my "advanced maternal age" of over 36 and run with that. Not actual blood test results - which were negative.

    There was an attitude of fear among many of the health professionals I encountered.

    That was unprofessional and wrong in my opinion.

    Present the facts. Then move on.

    Regardless, we would not have done anything different if the news had been different.

    steph
    Last edit by Spidey's mom on Apr 15, '09
  9. by   oramar
    Quote from Spidey's mom
    On the flip side DeLana - there are many women who do have babies in their 40's w/o donor eggs and the children are not "abnormal".

    I'm not saying it is likely - but to make blanket statements is not helpful either.

    I had my last child at 43. He is a healthy normal 7 year old.

    I'm very happy for you that you had your twins!

    steph

    I just have to add that I found it very insulting for the doc to push genetic testing and amniocentesis on us by the way.
    I was going to say the same thing. Most of the women in my family(with the exception of me) have had children between age of 35 and 45. My own daughter just gave birth and she just turned 36. My sister was born when my mom was 39 and herself had her youngest child at 35. Sometimes I talk here about my niece who is a ICU nurse, her kids were born when she was 35 and 38. My husbands youngest sister was born when his mother was 40, several of his sisters had kids in their 40s, one at 45. NO ONE had any help from medical science. NO ONE had a child with a genetic defect. I think the chances of concieving naturally after age 45 naturally are small but before 45, especially before 40 they are fair because I know so many people that do it. They are close family members and friends and I would have heard if they used artifical means. I am 60 and I have a friend my age who concieved at 45 BY ACCIDENT. It was quite a shock at the time but now the child is a healthy teenager and they are quite happy to have her.
  10. by   nerdtonurse?
    I personally know of 3 women who's "menopause" turned out to be a pregnancy. One child did have Downs, but the others didn't. Nature tries to find a way.

    Having said that, I'm pretty sure my old dinosaur eggs are so beat up, if I got pregnant at my age, my kid would come out looking like a freakin' hampster...or maybe a flounder, ya know, both eyes on one side of the nose or something....
  11. by   pageygirl
    Had my second at 38 although the first one at 25 I got pregnant the first month trying the second one took 3 mos...
  12. by   Chaya
    I think it's fair to say that although pregnancy is possible in an older woman it's unrealistic to depend on the probability of it occurring. On the other side of the coin, unlikely as a pregnancy may be in the older woman, it's equally unwise to assume pregnancy could NOT occur if you really don't want to have a baby...
  13. by   cardiacRN2006
    Quote from WildcatFanRN
    Just what I need, even more proof that the clock is ticking.....lol

    And I was thinking, "great, another fertility test I can fail"

    What fun!
  14. by   Aneroo
    Quote from cardiacRN2006
    And I was thinking, "great, another fertility test I can fail"

    What fun!
    Ditto.
    I had my first appointment with my endocrinologist this week, and he was asking about my cysts (we're thinking PCOS). He said "how often do you get them". My husband butted in with "She hasn't had one in a long time". I snarled back "Yeah, because that'd mean I'd have to ovulate FIRST'. He hushed up right quick.

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