Most couples undergoing infertility treatments set limits for how long they will try. Sometimes the limit is a number of months or years. More common is a limit which procedures will be tried and how many cycles each procedure should be done. There are many factors to consider in this decision.
The expense of some procedures, such as Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) affects the limits you set. You may wonder if it is worth the cost to try a second time, or if you don’t get pregnant in the first cycle, is it worth it to try again. According to recent research, it is often worth a second try.
A study was conducted at the Center for Reproductive Medicine and Infertility at Cornell University. The study looked at nearly 9,000 cycles from over 6,000 women. The women ranged from one attempt to six or more. The greatest success rates were in the first cycle, followed by the second cycle. The success rate dropped significantly in the third and fourth cycles.
Age was also a factor. Women under the age of 35 had more successful pregnancies in the first and second attempts than women over the age of 35. In the younger group, 53 percent got pregnant in the first cycle and 43 percent in the second. For this group of women, trying the second time was definitely worth it.
In addition to age, the cause and history of each woman’s infertility issues are a big factor to consider in setting limits. This is a decision only you and your partner can make, with the advice of your doctor. Studies into the success rate of women with your specific problem are another useful piece of the puzzle. Your reproductive endocrinologist should be able to shed some light on that issue. In the end, only you can decide how many cycles to try.