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Infertile women may experience high levels of psychological distress. The assessment of stress levels specifically related to infertility and the quality of life during infertility management needs to be evaluated.

Aims: To study the psychological health of women undergoing assisted reproduction.

Settings and Design: A cross-sectional study conducted between March 2014 and April 2015 at a tertiary care in-vitro fertilization setup in India.
Subjects and Methods: Clinical interview and self-report measures were applied for an assessment of the psychological state of infertile women (N=186). Anxiety was evaluated by Hamilton’s Rating Scale and Sinha’s Comprehensive Anxiety Test. Depression was assessed using Hamilton’s Rating Scale, Amritsar Depressive Inventory. Fertility and Quality of Life Questionnaire (FertiQoL) was applied to measure infertility specific stress. Overall life stress, covering all areas of life, was assessed using Presumptive Stressful Life Events Scale. Cornell Medical Index was applied to evaluate overall physical and mental health.

Statistical Analysis: Student’s t-test and chi-square test were applied, and statistical significant levels were calculated at P < 0.05. Statistical Analysis: Student’s t-test and chi-square test were applied, and statistical significant levels were calculated at P < 0.05.

Results: Clinically, significant depression was identified in 60.11–64.86% of the women. However, relatively lesser frequency of anxiety (27–37%) was observed. FertiQoL scores suggest that infertility treatment in itself is stressful, and nearly 80% of women reported increased levels of general life stresses.

Conclusion: Being infertile has profound detrimental psychological impact on the life of women. Women undergoing treatment had significant high levels of psychological stress, depression and anxiety along with a lowered quality of life.

Author

matritava

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