Causes & Treatment

Aged 40+? Here’s what to look for in an IVF clinic (& our go-to in Spain)

Emma Harpham in partnership with Clínica Tambre  |   16 Jul 2024

If you’re currently making decisions on IVF treatment over 40, you might have heard Spain pop up as a top destination for cutting-edge, tailored care.

But what exactly should we look for in a prospective clinic, if we’re in this age bracket? What are the questions to ask, and what expectations and priorities should we keep front and centre?

For the expert perspective from one of the best IVF clinics in Spain for over 40, we turned to Clínica Tambre. Based in Madrid, their team brings 45 years of expertise and to each patient journey.

Read up on the top 5 reasons patients decide to switch clinics and our most recent feature on egg donation in Spain for a flavour of their trademark approach, and connect directly with the team to get the ball rolling today.

Now, let’s unpack the top things they’d recommend you to look for in an IVF clinic, if you’re 40+ and considering treatment.

Over to the team.

Choosing a clinic for IVF treatment over 40 – your non-negotiables

1. Age-specific rules and regulations

Understanding any age-specific guidelines for IVF treatment is a crucial first step in the early planning stages, especially if you’re over the age of 40. It can really help determine your location, as well as your clinic of choice.

In the UK, the NHS and private clinics alike often cap fertility treatments for women at around age 43. 

Spanish legislation is one of the most advanced in Europe, and when it comes to the IVF in Spain age limit, laws allow us to treat patients up until a maximum age of 50 at Clínica Tambre. 

Access to fertility treatments for all women, regardless of their marital status and sexual orientation, as well as single women and female couples, is allowed under the Law on Assisted Reproduction Techniques in Spain.

Egg and sperm donation is also anonymous in Spain by law – good to know if you know you’re going to be looking at treatment with donor eggs.

2. Transparency and honesty

Transparency and honesty are key qualities in a clinic – and this should start with a focus on success rates, as well as your personal chances of pregnancy over 40. 

At Clínica Tambre, we don’t create false hopes, and we’ll always speak to you sincerely and ethically. 

Our team of highly qualified and recognised fertility specialists use the most advanced technologies, allowing us to offer an accurate and effective diagnosis that we’ll be upfront with you about. 

As a result of this approach, we’ve got some of the best success rates in IVF treatment with own eggs. For patients aged 40+, the success rate of treatment with own eggs sits at around 42%. 

Your clinic should guide the conversation about using your own eggs vs donor eggs, and be open with you about what to expect, as well as helping you navigate the next steps.

best ivf clinic in spain for over 40

3. A really good donor egg program

Look for a clinic with a robust donor program and high standards for screening. Usually, the question from patients having IVF treatment over 40 is whether to try with their own eggs, or opt for the egg donation route.

At Clínica Tambre, we will always try to obtain good-quality embryos from the patient’s own eggs. However, in some cases, egg donation is the best or only option for achieving a successful pregnancy.

Egg donation in Spain is highly regulated, as well as being altruistic, meaning donors aren’t paid or ‘compensated’ financially. As we’ve mentioned, donors are completely anonymous and will be selected for you by your doctor, after undergoing rigorous health and genetic checks – this is something we find gives patients peace of mind, through ensuring high standards of quality and safety.

For IVF with donor eggs, our success rates are above the European average, with a 71% chance of success on the first try going all the way up to 90% on the third try.

4. A track record of personalised treatment, from pre-testing to protocols 

IVF involves multiple steps that should always adapted to the actual needs of each patient. For patients over the age of 40, this is no exception. 

It’s so important to place yourself in the hands of an experienced medical team who are used to working with complex cases and older patients, and can design tailor-made treatments to increase your chances of success.

As part of IVF pre-testing at age 40 and up at Tambre, we’d start with a focus on your ovarian reserve – running a complete gynaecological examination, plus an ultrasound antral follicle count, and blood test to check your anti-Müllerian hormone (AMH) levels. 

With all the information from this initial assessment combined with other general tests, we’d provide you with a personalised treatment plan for your specific case. 

This could look like needing higher doses of medication, deciding to use donor eggs, or a dual stim protocol to give us multiple chances to retrieve more eggs, if we decide to use your own.

ivf pre testing age 40

5. The latest tech, and own labs

Find a clinic with a state-of-the-art laboratory and the latest tech and quality control standards – this is a must if you’re over 40 to help give you the best chances of success.

Your clinic should ideally offer genetic testing. At Clínica Tambre we use some of the most up-to-date methods, including Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD) which can help increase the chances of implanting a healthy embryo.

If you are looking at treatment with donor eggs, you can rest assured that Spain uses genetic matching, a preventive analysis that allows us to study 363 hereditary genetic diseases carried out on those who donate their gametes, as standard.

We’ll also use Fenomatch technology in-clinic as part of the donor-matching process. This is where a patient’s facial features are analyzed, and compared with a database of potential donors. Using advanced algorithms, it then identifies precise similarities in facial structure, eye shape, nose, and mouth. 

If we decide to try treatment with your own eggs, we also offer groundbreaking ovarian rejuvenation techniques to recover “dormant” eggs and increase the chances of pregnancy.

A good ‘gut feeling’ can go a long way, too 

Sometimes, a gut feeling goes a long way when it comes to choosing a clinic. 

Pick a welcoming team that gives you the most confidence, and can show you that they’ll personalise your treatment. 

Be aware of waiting lists, too. If you’re over 40, time is of the essence, and at Tambre, we’re able to operate with very minimal to zero wait times.  

Look for consultations and treatment in your language, too. We adapt to the cultural and ethnic background of each patient as standard, providing them with transparent information tailored to their individual case in their native language.

If you’re looking to get started with a best-in-class IVF clinic in Spain for over 40, Clínica Tambre’s first priority is getting to know you, and your journey so far. Connect with their team here.

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