Saturday, August 10, 2013

Is there any correlation between Stress and IVF Failure ?

IVF abounds with myths about the effects stress can have on its success .  Blaming stress for every failed IVF cycle has become a popular trend , resulting in the springing up of numerous “mind-body” programs for teaching stress management to IVF patients.

With good embryos, a good uterine lining and an easy embryo transfer being the hallmarks of a well carried out IVF cycle many patients naively expect each perfect IVF cycle to result in a pregnancy. Doctors too aim to cheer up their patient by being enthusiastic at the time of embryo transfer.

But when this perfect IVF cycle fails it is the patient who bears the brunt of the blame - not only from the doctor , but also from her husband and in-laws. They ascribe the failure of the IVF cycle to the fact that she did not relax sufficiently and her highly wound lifestyle resulted in the IVF failure. They blame her for getting stressed and therefore having her body reject the embryos.

Unfortunately, because there is no evidence against this claim, patients end up nodding a silent head to this argument. Added to their already existent low self-esteem on being unable to get pregnant in the first place, patients blame themselves for being unable to provide a safe home for their embryos.

Dr. Malpani suggests that framing the victim in this manner is cruel and heartless. There is no IVF patient who is not stressed out because no one desires to have an IVF done. But despite this stress, there are loads of successful IVF patients, thus deeming this very argument irrational.

Embryo implantation is a biological process which has no correlation with psychological processes like stress. Even a woman who gets raped can get pregnant and her levels of stress are off the scale ! Dr. Malpani believes that stress does not affect the outcome of the IVF cycle.

Are you worried that stress is causing your IVF cycles to fail ? Please send me your medical details by filling in the form at so that I can guide you better !

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