Seize the future

Systematic literature review

We systematically reviewed all the scientific literature that has been published on this topic.

We took in consideration all the studies that have been done with people who did unsuccessful fertility treatment to understand two things:

1) do these people present worse mental-health and wellbeing than those who manage to have children?, and
2) what are the psychological challenges that people have to overcome to be able to adjust to their childlessness situation?

Our results showed that people who do not manage to conceive with fertility treatment experience significantly worse mental health and wellbeing than those who manage to conceive. Further more, they show that these difficulties do not subside with time.

The review also showed that, in order to positively adjust, individuals have to progressively accept their biological childlessness; make meaning of past efforts to conceive and present childlessness situation; and pursue new fulfilling life goals or activities. Individuals who successfully manage these psychological tasks experience better wellbeing and develop a positive outlook on ending treatment, a more realistic view of the world and hope towards the future.

This scenario makes the post-treatment period deemed of clinical attention and reinforces advice for fertility clinics to engage with supporting patients during this period.

‘All of it fits resonates my experience. Obviously the research you’ve done it goes all the way through, I certainly can relate with much of it, from the woman’s point of view to the man’s point of view. Pretty much the all basis is covered.'

'And it fits with what we are still experiencing now. It completely resonates with how you process things.’