A Southampton University study found that working shift patterns made it harder for women to conceive.
The study compares the impact of working non-standard working schedules with that in women not working shifts.
Led by Dr Yin Cheong, a senior lecturer at Southampton University, and Dr Stocker included data on 119,345 women and found that those working shifts had a 33 per cent higher rate of menstrual disruption than those working regular hours.
Whilst we have demonstrated an association between shift work and negative early reproductive outcomes, we have not proven causation. However, if our results are confirmed by other studies, there may be implications for shift workers and their reproductive plans. Our findings may have implications for women attempting to become pregnant as well as employers."
– Dr Stocker, University of Southampton clinical researcher
Older women desperate to have a family are being given new hope they'll receive fertility treatment funded by the NHS. New national guidelines will raise the recommended cut off age from 39 to 42. Christine Alsford reports.
The National Infertility Awareness Campaign warned that as NICE guidelines are not mandatory, fears still remained over local implementation.
By updating the fertility guideline and extending the range of people it is recommending receive treatment, NICE clearly understands the impact which infertility has on people.
And we must be clear that infertility is a medical condition that causes significant distress for those trying to have a baby and has a devastating impact on people's lives.
The current 'postcode lottery' approach to the treatment of infertility here has gone on for far too long and it is vital that the Government supports the measures in the updated guideline and communicates the need to implement them to those who commission fertility services in the NHS.
We know the current system leaves many people unable to access NHS treatment and we need reassurance about the future of NHS fertility treatment as we move towards GP commissioning in 2013.
– Clare Lewis-Jones, Chairwoman of National Infertility Awareness Campaign
The guidelines from NICE also recommend the following:
IVF treatment for eligible women who have been unable to conceive after two years of regular intercourse - one year earlier than previously recommended
Women who have been having artificial insemination, which can include same-sex couples
Women aged 40-42 who have not conceived after two years of regular unprotected intercourse or 12 cycles of artificial insemination should be offered one full cycle of IVF, if they have never previously had IVF treatment
Where women are under 40, and have not conceived after two years of regular intercourse or 12 cycles of artificial insemination, three cycles of IVF should be offered