Article in Parent24

This is such a ridiculous article. It actually says that infertiles patients should go for mental health screening. They are not sure whether depression and anxiety are the underlying cause of infertility or perhaps a symptom of not being able to conceive???? Im really not sure who wrote this rubbish but is “smacks” of someone who just has no frigging clue.

A new study suggests infertile couples suffer from more mental disorders than their fertile counterparts.
Depression, anxiety and certain other mental health conditions are more common among infertile couples than those who are able to conceive on their own, a small study suggests.

The findings, say researchers, imply that routine mental health screening could benefit patients being treated for infertility.

While most of the 81 infertile couples in the study did not suffer from any of the psychiatric conditions the researchers assessed, they did have higher rates of certain disorders when compared with 70 fertile couples.

The biggest difference, the researchers found, was in the diagnosis of “adjustment disorder,” particularly among women. Adjustment disorder refers to symptoms of depression and anxiety in response to an identifiable cause – which, in these cases, was most likely patients’ infertility.

Among infertile women, 28% had an adjustment disorder marked by depression and anxiety, versus 3% of fertile women.
In addition, 18% of infertile women currently had binge-eating disorder, whereas none of their fertile counterparts did, according to the researchers, led by Dr. Chiara Sbaragli of the University of Siena School of Medicine in Italy.

Among men, there was evidence that infertility patients had higher rates of “subclinical” obsessive-compulsive disorder and social phobia – meaning signs and symptoms of these anxiety disorders were there, but not significant enough for a diagnosis.

According to the researchers, it’s not possible to say whether these mental health problems were the result of – or possibly a contributing factor to – patients’ infertility.

In the case of adjustment disorders, Sbaragli and her colleagues note, it’s likely that patients’ symptoms were a response to their fertility problems. However, they add, such symptoms could potentially make it harder for patients to recover from infertility; the effects of depression and anxiety on the nervous system, for instance, could in turn affect their reproductive function.

If larger studies confirm these findings, the researchers say, doctors may want to start routinely screening infertility patients for depression, anxiety disorders and eating disorders, and refer them for help when necessary.


8 comments so far

  1. Shaz on

    I disagree with the statements of OCD and Social Phobia’s I really find that hard to believe and my personal and unqualified opinion would be that infertility has very little to do with that.
    But I must say that from my personal experience, my infertility has caused me to battle depression and also to a certain extent my KuKd experience has given me a certain level of anxiety disorder.
    So I think there is some truth in it, but that the article takes it just too far.

  2. samcy on

    I think that there is some truth in this article actually cos it is proven that infertility can cause depression and anxiety, however I do also think that one has to take articles like this with a pinch of salt cos each case needs to be seen on it’s own merits.


  3. Leigh from 123 blog on

    I am amazed we’re not more screwed up, actually.

    Personally I don’t suffer from depression but I can see how many do.

    Are you feeling better today, or still anxious?

  4. April on

    whatev. i think that it is only normal to have depression and anxiety if you have a chronic illness. you can’t assume causality.


  5. celia on

    Yes, I am depressed BECAUSE I am infertile, not infertile because I am depressed. Sheesh.

  6. In Due Time on

    Interesting. Who wouldn’t be depressed after dealing with infertility? Gimme a break.

  7. Linda (littleangelkisses) on

    “i think that it is only normal to have depression and anxiety if you have a chronic illness. you can’t assume causality.”

    No kidding…plus frankly, most data can be skewed one way or another. This is a very small case study (151 people? give me a break) and doesn’t represent a real cross section.

  8. Hillary on

    oh my gosh that article is crazy!! Interesting post, thanks.
    I stopped by from ICLW and saw that your DH has a varicocele (so does my DH)…I’ll be interested read more of your blog 🙂

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