Illness cognitions, anxiety, and depression in men and women undergoing fertility treatments: A dyadic approach

Ansha Patel, P. S.V.N. Sharma, Pratap Kumar, V. S. Binu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Emotional response to infertility is mediated by numerous interrelated psychological variables such as personality, health perceptions, cognitive appraisals, coping, and social support. While men and women respond to infertility differently, illness cognitions are a vital component of their emotional adjustment. The aim of this study is to compare the infertile men and women undergoing fertility treatments on perceived distress, helplessness, acceptance, benefits, anxiety, and depression. Materials and Methods: Eighty-one infertile couples, undergoing intrauterine insemination participated in the study. They were assessed on the presence of infertility distress using the fertility problem inventory, for psychiatric morbidity using the Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview, for affective disturbances using the Hamilton Anxiety and Depression scales, and for illness cognitions using the Illness Cognition Questionnaire. Statistical Analysis: Data are analyzed using SPSS version 15. The paired sample t-test is performed for assessing differences on normally distributed data. The Wilcoxon Signed-Rank test is performed for assessing differences in medians obtained on data that was skewed. Results and Discussion: Infertile women (wives) were more emotionally distressed, anxious, and depressed than men (husbands). Gender-wise differences were found for perceptions of helplessness and acceptance of infertility. Infertility was perceived to be a nonbeneficial event for both partners investigated. Conclusion: Negative cognitions and affective disturbances may contribute to higher treatment burden in couples seeking-assisted conception. The present study suggests that psychosocial intervention for couples plays a central role and should be integrated within the conventional treatments for infertility.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)180-189
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Human Reproductive Sciences
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 01-04-2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Reproductive Medicine


Dive into the research topics of 'Illness cognitions, anxiety, and depression in men and women undergoing fertility treatments: A dyadic approach'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this