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Abstract

Psychosocial aspects of infertile couples

Louise Brown was born thirty years ago as the worlds first "test-tube"-baby.Numerous speculations and concerns were linked to this event, some of them related to psychosocial aspects of infertility and of assisted reproduction. The last few years have brought huge advances in the understanding of psychosocial aspects of infertility.This review begins with a presentation of the important demographic and medical preconditions involved.This is followed by an overview of psychosocial features typical for infertile couples and a discussion of the connections between distress and infertility.The psychological effects of reproductive medical treatment are described, and the long-term impact of involuntary childlessness is outlined. The basic principles, aims and effects of counselling and psychotherapy with infertile couples are set out in detail, together with urgent requirements for future research in this area after thirty years of in vitro fertilisation.

Tewes Wischmann
Zentrum für Psychosoziale Medizin, Institut für Medizinische
Psychologie, Universitätsklinikum Heidelberg
Reviewer: Heribert Kentenich, Berlin
und Petra Thorn,Mörfelden

Wischmann T. Psychologische... Gynakol Geburtsmed Gynakol Endokrinol 2008; 4(3): 194-209 publiziert 30.11.08 www.akademos.de/gyn ©akademos Wissenschaftsverlag 2008 ISSN 1614-8533