Fertility Math – Most women do not know the basic facts about their own fertility and aging, according to a new study.
Data presented at this year’s American Society of Reproductive Medicine Annual Meeting from the Fertility IQ 2011 Survey found that the majority of woman of reproductive age underestimated the magnitude of fertility decline with increasing age.
The survey was conducted among more than 1,000 women aged between 25 and 35.
Most of the woman surveyed didn’t know when a healthy woman is 30, she has about a 20% chance of conceiving every month. By 40, this has dropped to 5%
Respondents answered seven out of ten fertility knowledge questions with a less than 50 per cent correct average response rate.
The survey found that women were wrong most often about how long it takes to get pregnant — and about how much fertility declines at various ages.
Many of the woman did not realise that when a healthy woman is 30, she only has about a 20 per cent chance of conceiving every month. By 40, this has dropped to five per cent.
The women surveyed put the odds at much much higher. Instead, they thought that a 30-year-old woman would have a 70 per cent chance of conceiving and that a 40-year-old’s chances could approach 60 per cent.
“While these data show that women have a general understanding about fertility issues, there is a clear need to educate further on the impact of age on fertility,” Barbara Collura, Executive Director of RESOLVE, The National Infertility Association, said. “It is important for women to know that as you age, it may become increasingly difficult to conceive, and conception rates are not as high as most people believe.”
Most women find out their fertility information from their gynaecologist others from the internet and some from friends and family.
Other areas where there were huge gaps of knowledge was in the time women believed it took them to get pregnant with only 14 per cent answering correctly.
They thought a 20-year-old woman might get pregnant in less than two months of unprotected sex, rather than the actual average of five months.
“It’s basic biology and basic knowledge of how age impacts your fertility if you’re a woman,” said Ms Collura.
INFERTILITY – THE FACTS Infertility affects some 7.3 million women in the United States, or 12 per cent of the child-bearing female population – about one in eight couples.