Effectiveness of psychosocial group intervention for reducing anxiety in women undergoing in vitro fertilization: a randomized controlled study.

Chan CH et al, Fertil Steril. 2006 Feb;85(2):339-46. Fertility and Sterility
A group of researchers from Hong Kong hypothesized that women who received certain interventions would experience a lower level of anxiety during the IVF treatment and therefore have better mental adjustment and psychosocial functioning during IVF. This programme includes instruction on principles of Chinese medicine emphasizing body-mind harmony and stress reduction techniques including Tai qi and meditation. However it did not include acupuncture. They found that anxiety was significantly reduced in the women who followed the programme.



Objective: To evaluate the effect of the Eastern Body-Mind-Spirit (EBMS) group intervention on anxiety-reduction of Chinese women undergoing IVF.

Design: Randomized controlled study.

Setting: Tertiary assisted reproduction unit.

Participant(s): Two hundred twenty-seven women undergoing their first cycle of IVF treatment.

Intervention(s): The intervention group (n = 69) received four sessions of EBMS group counseling, while the control group (n = 115) did not receive any intervention.

Main Outcome Measure(s): State-Trait Anxiety Inventory.

Result(s): Compared with the control group, the intervention group had a significant drop in State Anxiety mean score following intervention. A comparable number of embryos were transferred for each group, but there was a nonsignificant trend of a higher pregnancy rate in the intervention group.

Conclusion(s): The Eastern Body-Mind-Spirit group intervention approach effectively reduces the anxiety level of women undergoing IVF treatment.