ALMOST three-quarters of people do not think women should receive IVF to help them conceive beyond their natural childbearing years, a poll has found.

A quarter said women should stop trying to become pregnant past the age of 40, while they said 43 should be the cut-off for men.

The survey found 31% thought the current limit of 42 for IVF on the NHS was too old. Some 26% thought 40 should be the age limit for NHS or private treatment.

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Almost three-quarters (72%) said science should not intervene to help women get pregnant beyond their natural childbearing years.

The poll was released to mark the TLC documentary Tina Malone: Pregnant At 50, which will air on Tuesday. The Shameless actress travelled to Cyprus for IVF treatment and conceived her daughter Flame with donor eggs, giving birth aged 50.

Two-thirds of those surveyed said they thought children born to women aged 50 to 55 were negatively affected by having an older mother. This rose to 73% of over-50s surveyed.

Some 52% said women who are 50 could not be a good parent for a child through to adulthood.

When asked about men aged 50 and over having children, 43% said the same.

Malone, now 51, had her first child aged 17.

She said: "Physically, emotionally, mentally and financially I am much better off now, as a mum at 50, than I was as a mum at 17, when nobody criticised me for having a baby. I have more stamina and energy than most 27-year-olds and all the time to give to my baby."