I want to ask the question: "what is the age cut-off for female fertility", but I think that varies a lot between women.

Instead, I ask, what can be done to extend the fertility of a woman? Basically, what can be done to slow down the onset of menopause?

  • 4
    Something like freezing eggs while young sort of "extends" one's childbearing years, but I am not aware of anything that would actually put off menopause. Women are born with all the eggs they can ever produce and release them over time.
    – Acire
    Apr 11 '15 at 15:35
  • 2
    This is a question for her to ask a OB-GYN.
    – Marc
    Apr 11 '15 at 17:45
  • Fertility generally plummets well before menopause and the risk of genetic abnormality rises dramatically. The question is overly simplistic.
    – dave
    Apr 13 '15 at 8:36
  • @dave The question doesn't need to take risks of eventual late pregnancies into consideration, that's a disclaimer for an answer. Apr 13 '15 at 8:41
  • There are LOTS of claims online about how to slow down (or speed up) menopause. I see little if any proof from any of the claims being made. I agree that this is a question for your OB-GYN. She/he will be far more educated about the realities.
    – RLH
    Nov 29 '15 at 5:30

According to WebMD,

There is no way to delay menopause; it can only be sped up, not slowed down, by external factors.

Factors that DO affect menopause age:

  • the age her mother experienced menopause
  • smoking
  • chemotherapy
  • ovarian surgery
  • ethnicity

Factors that do NOT:

  • age of first period
  • pregnancy and breastfeeding
  • use of hormonal birth control methods

Factors being studied, but have unknown effects:

  • bisphenol A (BPA), a chemical used to make certain plastic

If you are only worried about the egg quality, egg retrieval before the age of 35 is best. For eggs retrieved after 35, you may want to pay for genetic testing. Different physicans have different cutoffs recommendations, but 35 is the most common one. The uterus "quality" doesn't decline with age. Even women who have experienced menopause can take hormones to carry a pregnancy with a frozen embryo.

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