Nowadays, western countries have a larger number of women pursuing post-graduation studies. Often, women are delaying motherhood due to career goals, however, they have no knowledge about the impact of aging on their chances to achieve a pregnancy.
In this article, authors had the following objectives among the female students:
Population– female students less than 45 years old from Medical, Law, Dental and Business programs at Case Western Reserve and Ohio State University.
590 answers were reviewed.
93% of the population stated that it is important to think about having babies in the future, particularly among women 30 years old and above.
77% of the childless women stated that they plan children in the future.
69% due to their career goals.
50% due to financial security.
35% due to the lack of partnership.
59% of the students are aware that the best fertile period is between age 20-24.
51% actually know that fertility starts dropping by the age of 35. Still, 56% believed that they are still fertile at the age of 45. Contrarily, 15% of the interviewed are sure that at age 45, 90% of women are infertile.
92% of women already knew that egg freezing is a possibility to secure their fertility.
17% of women were informed about ovarian tissue preservation.
60% of participants would consider future fertility preservation. However, 87% are thrown back due to costs and 73% due to their lack of knowledge about success.
24% of students mentioned that they would consider the egg freezing treatment in the next 10 years and 12% would like embryo freezing within the same 10 years’ time.
Regardless their willingness to have babies, 36% of the participants would like their Gynaecologist to talk about fertility options.
Overall, the authors proved that only 50% of highly educated women are aware of the fertility decline and its implications along the years. But, for the ones that are aware and would like to take action, costs and perceptive ideas about success rates are still obstacles to overcome. Unfortunately, the lack of knowledge can well be the main cause for some women to miss their window to have their own genetic child in the future.
Source: Hickman, L. et al. (2018) Fertility and fertility preservation: knowledge, awareness and attitudes of female graduate students.The European Journal of conception & reproductive health care. 23, (2). 130-138.