Finally, positive attention is being paid to the aging woman. Women in their 40s look better, feel better, have successful careers and seem to be able to do it all. In fact, it has been suggested that life for a woman really begins at age 40. For once, the “mature” woman is being celebrated rather than lamented. 40 is the new 30!
I knew from a very early age that I wanted to go to college and have a career. It wasn’t until my sophomore year in college, though, that I made the decision to pursue medicine — a career path that would ultimately take 15 years of my life to accomplish.
After training for 15 years to become a Maternal-Fetal Medicine Specialist, I found myself 34 with no prospects for a long-term relationship and one year away from being the dreaded “advanced maternal age” — that age for a woman when her risk of having a baby with genetic abnormalities (i.e. Down syndrome) starts to increase. As a high-risk obstetrician, I should have realized the significance of that milestone in my life, but I didn’t.
Recent advances in fertility treatment have given women more flexibility and options to plan for motherhood through such popular technology as oocyte cryopreservation (egg freezing) and embryo cryopreservation (embryo freezing).
As someone who spends her day talking to patients about IVF, I find that many people are not excited to find themselves across the table from me. As a fertility specialist, the conversations in my office are never dull, but when a couple is faced with infertility,...