Vol 82, No 1 (2011)

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Infertility as a psychological problem

Magdalena Podolska, Mariola Bidzan
Ginekol Pol 2011;82(1).


Abstract Recently there has been enormous progress in couple infertility treatment and diagnostics. Some couples cannot conceive despite the fact that there seems to be no objective somatic or immunologic reasons. In such situations gynaecologists are helpless and couples may be overwhelmed by a sense of defeat and hopelessness. Thus, consulting a psychologist or therapist on how to cope better with the problem may be a good solution. The objective of the following paper is to discuss the dilemmas of couples undergoing infertility treatment, related psychological problems, and to determine the need for psychological and therapeutic support. The study demonstrates numerous infertility causes and concludes that there is no universal method of dealing with them. Very frequently psychological and somatic problems overlap. Psychological causes are often the primary factors, but sometimes they are secondary derivatives of the therapeutic process. A wide scope of factors must be considered to attempt psychological analysis of patients treated for infertility, including the influence of the family and relations within, reaction to the diagnosis and suggested treatment, the influence of religion on the treatment, the evaluation of the relations in the family of procreation, sexual life assessment, the sense of a woman’s self-esteem and self-acceptance. Basing on empirical analysis it was concluded that all women treated for infertility want to create a full family. They have problems in coping with emotional liability during treatment and a sense of fear and failure. Understanding the psychological mechanisms observed in patients treated for infertility might help to diagnose the causes of their problems with facing the new, extremely difficult situation.

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