Does stress cause IVF to fail?

2 fertility expert(s) answered this question

Answer from: Raúl Olivares, MD

Gynaecologist, Medical Director & Owner
Barcelona IVF

We currently have no evidence that stress may affect the results of IVF. There are several reasons for this. Firstly, we consider stress to be inherent to these treatments, meaning that the process patients undergo is inherently stressful. Secondly, the artificial nature of the cycles, where ovulation is stimulated and blocked, disconnects the ovaries from the brain, making them less susceptible to usual conditions that affect ovulation. Additionally, there is no evidence that stress can damage the quality or affect the genetics of sperm. While it’s true that we still need to confirm whether receptors in the endometrium respond negatively to steroids produced in stressful situations, we lack current tests to identify such patients. Furthermore, studies assessing whether patients feel stress or not do not show significant differences in success rates. Therefore, for now, we can conclude stress is not a relevant factor in the results of IVF.

Answer from: Elena Santiago, MD

Gynaecologist, Fertility Specialist
Clinica Tambre

Lots of patients ask us if, for example, stress, is a factor to take into account that could be increasing the chances of having an IFV failure. It is true that we don’t have the studies to say that this could be affecting but I think that is very important for the patients to be emotionally stable to go through all the treatment and feel as good as possible. So, if we need any psychological help, we need to ask for it, or if for example, there are any treatments that we could do, for example, acupuncture, I think it’s not going to have any negative effect on the treatment or on the patient, but maybe if it helps us to have less stress is absolutive good to go ahead with it.

About this question:

Can IVF cycle fail because of patient's stress levels?

Does the distress that women feel during an IVF cycle, especially after embryo transfer, contributes to IVF failure?

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