Your Job Can Affect Your Fertility, According To A New Study
It's National Infertility Awareness Week, and FertilityIQ.com is kicking it off releasing this study examining how your job affects your fertility. FertilityIQ gathered data 1,146 respondents across the United States, all of whom were undergoing IVF (in vitro fertilization) treatment. As the researchers note, despite the fact that IVF is five times more in demand in the last two decades, there is still relatively little known about the external factors that may or may not predict the success of IVF. In order to gain a broader perspective of potential influencing factors, the researchers had respondents self-report particulars like their type of career field, their salaries, how male-dominated their fields were, and their age and education.
Although it may come as somewhat of a surprise, in this small sample of respondents it did seem as though career and income both affected the success of IVF treatment. To clarify, IVF is considered successful if it results in a healthy pregnancy; when you consider that a single round of IVF is 70 percent likely to fail and costs an average of $16,500, it makes a lot more sense that women in some pay brackets would be at an advantage compared to others. The research supports this — women who come from households that make over $100,000 per year are twice as likely to have success with IVF, and also more likely to have success after freezing their eggs, compared to women who make less that $100,000 annually.
That being said, you probably wouldn't be able to guess right off the top of your head which specific fields seemed to have higher success rates of IVF than others.
According to FerilityIQ's study, women who worked in teaching, sales, marketing, or public relations were more likely to have success with IVF. Teachers in particular were six times more likely to have success with IVF, which researchers speculate might have to do with their summer availability as well as the relative openness they can discuss IVF in the workplace and possibly get advice from coworkers.
Women in more traditionally male-dominated fields, like banking and accounting, did not share these same benefits, and were in fact 60 percent less likely to have success with IVF. According to the survey, women in these fields work jobs that they less open discussing IVF in, and find it harder to adhere to the necessary cycles of IVF with the challenge of hiding it.
The study also found that education was not a significant factor in the success of IVF. The researchers summed up their study in this infographic below.