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Gender differences in psychological reactions to infertility among couples seeking IVF- and ICSI-treatment

Hjelmstedt, Anna, Andersson, Lena, Skoog-Svanberg, Agneta, Bergh, Torbjörn, Boivin, Jacky and Collins, Aila 1999. Gender differences in psychological reactions to infertility among couples seeking IVF- and ICSI-treatment. Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica 78 (1) , pp. 42-49. 10.1034/j.1600-0412.1999.780110.x

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Abstract

Background. Gender differences and similarities in psychological reactions related to infertility, perception of social support, the effect of infertility on the marital relationship and coping-style were investigated among Swedish couples seeking in vitro fertilization - or intracytoplasmic sperm injection - treatment. Methods. Ninety-one couples entering treatment completed the Infertility Reaction Scale, a self-report questionnaire with structured and open-ended questions and the Miller Behavioral Style Scale. Results. The women reacted more strongly to their infertility than the men as measured by the Infertility Reaction Scale (p<0.05). Factor analysis of the Infertility Reaction Scale produced three factors for men and women respectively. The first factor that emerged for the men was "The male role and social pressure" and the second factor was "The major focus of life". For women the first two factors were reversed compared to those of the men. The third factor "Effect on sexual life" was similar for men and women. Significantly more men than women had not confided in anyone about their infertility problems (p<0.001). The information-seeking coping style was significantly correlated with infertility distress only among men (p<0.05). Conclusion. The women reacted more strongly to their infertility than the men and they felt an intense desire to have a child. They received more social support than their partners, who experienced the fulfillment of the male role as well as the social role to become a parent as the most central aspects of infertility. The information-seeking coping style was significantly correlated with infertility distress only among men.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Psychology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Woman
R Medicine > RG Gynecology and obstetrics
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell
ISSN: 0001-6349
Last Modified: 21 Apr 2020 14:27
URI: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/11500

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