At What Age Did Your Mom Experience Menopause? Could It Impact Your Fertility?


Are you and your partner/spouse trying to decide the perfect time to start a family?  There are lots of things to consider: finances, insurance, lifestyle, jobs, your home….. etc.  However, there may be another important variable to consider.

Ladies, ask your mom when she went through menopause!

In a recent study published in the journal, Human Reproduction, researchers found that there may be a correlation between the age at which your mom went through menopause and the number of healthy eggs you currently have.

Researchers began by separating 527 women between the ages for 20-40 into three different groups.  The stipulations for being included in the study were that the women both worked in the healthcare field at Copenhagen University Hospital and that they knew the age at which their mothers went though menopause.

The three groups were based on when their mothers experienced menopause:

  • Early (before the age of 45)
  • Normal (between the ages of 46-54)
  • Late (55 or older)

Then they began taking blood samples and tracking the medical history, lifestyle choices and BMI of all the women.  To finish the study, they did a transvaginal sonography procedure with each participant to calculate the number of potential healthy eggs they still had available.

What they found was that that the womens' egg reserve decreased at a different rate depending on the age of menopause for their moms.

  • Those who had moms who were in the early category lost eggs at rate of 8.6%.
  • Those who has moms who were in the normal category lost eggs at a rate of 6.8%.
  • Those who had moms who were in the late category lost eggs at a rate of 4.2%.

Prior studies have shown that women begin losing eggs 20 years before menopause.  When you combine this fact with the maternal mother’s age at menopause, it gives women a better idea of when they may be the most fertile in their life. 

It seems crazy to think that those whose mothers fell in the early menopause category may in fact begin losing eggs at the age of 25!!!  Yikes!!

With the trend of women waiting to have children, there are huge implications here.  It may also explain the increased numbers of women experiencing infertility as well. 

So….. let your doctor know if you are struggling to get pregnant and your mother experienced and early menopause! 

 

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By TTC veteran and mother of two, Elizabeth Andrews.