Should I Get My Fertility Checked?
It is normal to take up to a year to get pregnant if you are age 35 or older, and up to six months if you are under the age of 35. But if you have been trying to get pregnant for more than six months or one year, depending on your age, and haven’t been able to, you may be asking “should I get my fertility checked?” The answer is, yes! It’s time to talk to a doctor about getting your fertility tested.
What Happens During a Fertility Exam?
During a fertility exam, a fertility doctor will test your ovarian reserve. Ovarian reserve testing not only examines the number of remaining eggs, but also their size, quality, and developmental potential. As women age, their ovarian reserve decreases. With that, fertility also decreases. In fact, 25% of women aged 35-39 will have difficulty conceiving, and 34% of women aged 40 will have trouble getting pregnant.
Fertility doctors can test ovarian reserve through a simple blood test. They’ll examine your anti-mullerian hormone (AMH) level, which is a reliable indicator of fertility. This regulatory protein is thought to play a role in coordinating follicular development within the ovary. Doctors will use your results to understand the size and quality of your egg supply, as well as:
- Determine your candidacy for infertility treatment and proactively discuss options available to you.
- Screen you for conditions that can affect your fertility, such as endometriosis, ovarian cysts, fibroids, and more.
- Assist you with family planning, so you feel confident as you approach parenthood.
How Quickly is Ovarian Reserve Depleted?
Typically, ovarian reserve remains strong in women up to about age 35, which is where it begins to decline. The proportion of euploid (normal, healthy) embryos goes from about 76% among women aged 25 to 30, to 52% among 35 to 40-year-olds. After age 40, that percentage drops significantly. These figures will vary for each individual, and some women experience premature ovarian reserve depletion. Other women are able to conceive naturally in their forties. If you are asking “should I get my fertility checked”, testing your ovarian reserve is the best way to understand your fertility.
Fertility Centers of New England can help you take control of your fertility. Whether you’re 28 and considering freezing your eggs to preserve your fertility, or 35 and having difficulty conceiving on your own, it’s important to understand your fertility so you can take advantage of the treatment options available. When you’re ready, we’re here for you.