Answers about aging and male fertility
More and more couples are delaying parenthood until their 30s, 40s and beyond, hoping to focus on other priorities and have a baby when the time is just right. But even as they’ve put off parenthood, many dads-to-be have asked our Las Vegas fertility specialists: What’s the relationship between aging and male fertility? Is there such a thing as “men-opause”?
Aging and male fertility issues
While most women know that their fertility declines over time, many men don’t realize that they have biological clocks, too. Through the decades, research studies have consistently drawn connections between aging and male fertility problems.
- One 1976 study found that men ages 45 and up took five times longer to get their partners pregnant than men younger than 25.
- In one 2000 study, conception within one year was 30% less likely for men older than 40 than men younger than 30.
- A 2004 study found that sperm volume, movement and structure decline as men age.
- In a 1995 study of couples undergoing IUI, the age of the male partner was the most significant factor contributing to probability of pregnancy.
Why does male fertility decline over time? According to research, one reason may be that sperm motility decreases with age. In other words, the sperm slow down, possibly due to an age-related decline in the function of the prostate and the epididymis, both of which play a vital role in sperm motility.
Studies have also noted an age-related decline in the number of normally shaped sperm, with a 4% to 18% decrease in normal shape over a 20-year period. And, sperm DNA fragmentation increases over time, which can also contribute to male factor infertility.
Find out his fertility status
If you want to find out more about aging and male fertility – including whether your partner’s sperm are affected – fertility testing can provide answers. If male factor problems are found in men who want to become dads late in life, advanced infertility treatment offers many options that may not have been possible a generation ago.
To learn more, contact us to schedule a consultation with one of our Las Vegas fertility experts.