Development of brief stress management support groups for couples undergoing in vitro fertilization treatment

Mary Ellen McNaughton-Cassill, Michael Bostwick, Sara E. Vanscoy, Nancy J. Arthur, Timothy N. Hickman, Randal D. Robinson, Greg S. Neal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations


Objective: To develop and assess the efficacy of couples stress management groups offered concurrently with IVF treatment : Couples in IVF treatment were given the option of participating in a biweekly stress management group. Sett : The IVF treatment clinic at Wilford Hall Medical Center, San Antonio, Texas. Patient(s): One or both members of 17 couples participated in the program in one of four group cycles. Intervention(s): A cognitive behavioral treatment model was used to help couples process their feelings and cognitions about the impact of infertility on their life and explore their expectations about their future options for becoming parents. Main Outcome Measure(s): Couples were asked to anonymously evaluate the efficacy of the group after they had completed their IVF cycle. Result(s): Participants reported that the group helped them deal with the stress of infertility and that they valued the social bonds they formed with other group members. Conclusion(s): These data suggest that brief focused group therapy, offered while couples are undergoing IVF, is an effective way to help people deal with the stress of infertility treatment. Copyright (C) 2000 American Society for Reproductive Medicine.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)87-93
Number of pages7
JournalFertility and sterility
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 2000


  • IVF patients
  • Stress management
  • Support group

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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