The impact of group psychological interventions on distress in infertile women

Health Psychol. 2000 Nov;19(6):568-75. doi: 10.1037//0278-6133.19.6.568.


Infertile women express higher levels of distress than fertile women, with distress peaking between the 2nd and 3rd year. The purpose of this study was to determine whether group psychological interventions could prevent this surge. One hundred eighty-four women who had been trying to conceive between 1 and 2 years were randomized into either a cognitive-behavioral group, a support group, or a control group. All experimental participants attended a 10-session group program. Participants completed psychological questionnaires at intake and again at 6 and 12 months. Substantial attrition occurred, particularly in the control group. The cognitive-behavioral and support participants experienced significant psychological improvement at 6 and 12 months compared with the control participants, with the cognitive-behavioral participants experiencing the greatest positive change.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Boston
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infertility, Female / psychology*
  • Psychotherapy, Group*
  • Self-Help Groups*
  • Stress, Psychological / etiology
  • Stress, Psychological / prevention & control*