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Proceedings of a meeting of the EAPS Working Group on Late fertility and its implications

Participants were

  • Mare Ainsaar, University of Tartu
  • Ofra Anson, Ben Gourion University of the Negev
  • Ann Berrington, University of Southampton
  • Gijs Beets, NIDI, Den Haag
  • Lynda Clarke, Centre for Population Studies, LSHTM, London
  • Eva Gardos, HCSO, Budapest
  • Catherine Gourbin, University of Louvain
  • Henri Leridon, INED-INSERM, Paris
  • Ferenc Kamaras, HCSO, Budapest
  • Katje Kesseli, STAKES, Helsinki
  • Lisbet Knudsen, University of Aalborg
  • Wolfgang Lutz, IIASA
  • Toivo Mangel, University of Tallin
  • Anneli Miettinen, Population Research Institute, Helsinki
  • Anne-Marie Nybo Andersen, University of Copenhagen
  • Livia Olah, University of Stockholm
  • Pirjo Paajanen, Population Research Institute, Helsinki
  • Giulia Rivellini, Catholic University of Milan
  • Ene-Margit Tiit, University of Tartu
  • Laurent Toulemon, INED, Paris
  • Guillaume Wunsch, University of Louvain

A. Overview of participants' activities

A first part of the meeting was devoted to a brief presentation of the research interests of the participants.

B. Past activities of the WG

The WG was created at the end of the year 2002 and had as its first activity a seminar held in Paris in May 2003 in collaboration with the INED and the INSERM. Participants were mainly from the three organising institutions, and came from various disciplines: demography, epidemiology, gynaecology and obstetrics, etc. Henri Leridon who was the coordinator of this meeting.

The topics dealt with in the meeting were the following:

  • The background: fertility, biology and age
  • Births beyond age 35: historical and international data (France Prioux, Ined, Paris)
  • Births beyond age 35: socio-demographic characteristics of men and women still wanting children (Laurent Toulemon, Ined, Paris)
  • Biological context: the male side (Jacques Auger, Hop Cochin, Paris)
  • Biological context: the female side (Alain Gougeon, Inserm U407 Lyon)
  • Conception, pregnancy outcome and age of parents
  • A review of the effects of age on fecundability and intra-uterine mortality (Elise de La Rochebrochard, Inserm-Ined U569 Paris and Patrick Thonneau, Inserm, Toulouse)
  • Estimating the chances of bearing a child with and without ART by age of mother (results of a simulation model) (Henri Leridon, Inserm-Ined U569, Paris)
  • Paternal age and risk of spontaneous abortion: methodological problems and results (Beaumont-Hague and Saint-Brieuc Study) (Rémy Slama, Inserm-Ined U569 Paris)
  • The measurement of infertility problems in the American NSFG surveys (Egbert te Velde, University of Utrecht)
  • Fecundability beyond age 30 in the Menstrual Cycle Fecundability Study (Ester Rizzi, University of Padova)
  • Perinatal mortality, other adverse perinatal outcomes and age of parents
  • A review of the effects of age on perinatal and infant mortality (Catherine Gourbin, University of Louvain)
  • Parental age and foetal loss: results from a Danish cohort study (Anne-Marie Nybo-Andersen, University of Copenhagen)
  • Causes and prevalence of congenital anomalies in relation to age (European Surveillance of Congenital Anomalies, Eurocat) (Helen Dolk, University of Ulster, Belfast)
  • Trends in prevalence of Down syndrome: role of increasing age and development of antenatal screening (Babak Khoshnood and Catherine de Vigan, Registre Malformations de Paris, Inserm U149, Paris)
  • Delayed childbearing and its impact on stillbirth, preterm delivery and small for gestational age (Paola Astolfi, Padua)
  • Contribution of Assited Reproductive Technology (ART) data on the question of age and reproduction
  • Age Effects in ART data : results (Jacques de Mouzon, Inserm U569, Paris)
  • Age and success rates in ART: methodological issues (René Ecochard, Hôpitaux de Lyon)

C. Proposal for future activities

Catherine Gourbin first presented possible topics and opened the discussion.

Topics proposed:

  • Impact of late childbearing on occupational life
  • Impact of activity on the tempo of childbearing
  • Impact of late childbearing on child development taking account the health status and the psychosocial development of the child (normal child / premature or low birth weight baby)

Several complementary ideas were proposed by the participants:

  • Fetal wastage
  • Contraception, induced abortion, and late childbearing
  • Heterogeneity in late fertility
  • Changes in patterns of sexual relations, family formation and dissolution and their impact on the timing of childbearing
  • Contextual social and political factors favouring late childbearing
  • Assisted reproductive technologies (ART) and fertility behaviours
  • The problem of adequate data was raised but not pursued
Thursday, August 28, 2003
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