Study Shows Women’s Emotional Distress is Not Associated with Poor Infertility Treatment Outcomes
|Marci Lobel, PhD
STONY BROOK, NY. July 13, 2018–Infertility treatments, such as in-vitro fertilization (IVF), are stressful experiences for women that can take large emotional tolls, especially when the treatment fails. At a time when extra support is needed, infertile women often report that family and friends urge them to “just relax” so they can conceive, causing women to feel as if their mental state is to blame for treatment failures. But a new study reveals evidence that women’s emotional state does not have a strong connection with the success of infertility treatment. Co-authored by Marci Lobel, PhD, Professor of Psychology and Jennifer Nicoloro SantaBarbara, MSW, MA, and colleagues at Stony Brook University, the study results are published in
Social Science and Medicine
The researchers analyzed more than 20 published studies involving more than 4,000 women to investigate whether women’s emotional distress impedes the success of infertility treatments. The results of the analysis indicated that women’s distress, including anxiety and depressive symptoms, is not associated with poor treatment outcomes. These findings held true for women regardless of their age, how long they were infertile and whether or not they had been treated for infertility previously.
“Our results offer hope and optimism to the many women who feel emotionally responsible or blame themselves for poor outcomes of infertility treatment,” summarized Lobel.
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Stony Brook University is going beyond the expectations of what today’s public universities can accomplish. Since its founding in 1957, this young university has grown to become a flagship as one of only four University Center campuses in the State University of New York (SUNY) system with more than 26,000 students and 2,600 faculty members, and 18 NCAA Division I athletic programs. Our faculty have earned numerous prestigious awards, including the Nobel Prize, Pulitzer Prize, Indianapolis Prize for animal conservation, Abel Prize and the inaugural Breakthrough Prize in Mathematics. The University offers students an elite education with an outstanding return on investment: U.S. News & World Report ranks Stony Brook among the top 50 public universities in the nation. Its membership in the Association of American Universities (AAU) places Stony Brook among the top 62 research institutions in North America. As part of the management team of Brookhaven National Laboratory, the University joins a prestigious group of universities that have a role in running federal R&D labs. Stony Brook University is a driving force in the region’s economy, generating nearly 60,000 jobs and an annual economic impact of more than $4.6 billion. Our state, country and world demand ambitious ideas, imaginative solutions and exceptional leadership to forge a better future for all. The students, alumni, researchers and faculty of Stony Brook University are prepared to meet this challenge.