Infertility Associated with Depression

Infertility have both psychological and sociological impact on couple. It affects marital relationship and the quality of life. It affects mood, which can suddenly be down or aggressively be up. More importantly is the feeling of loneliness by females as everyone around is trying to be careful not to salt the purported injury. Females affected with infertility were subjected to depression test in a recent study and the result shows that majority were depressed.

Depression is a switch of mood usually from high to low which may lead to aversion of usual activities. It affects one’s thought, behavior, feelings and well-being. People with depression can feel sad, anxious, empty, hopeless, worthless, guilty, irritable and restless. Depression might come with head ache, pains, fatigue, reduced or increased energy. Activities that one loves doing might become undesirable. There could be loss of appetite, loss of concentration, over reaction to issues and worst still is the feeling of suicide.

The causes of depression could be anything minor or major that has the ability to overpower one’s natural feeling. People‘s reaction to grief for instance differ from one another. Others causes are feeling of neglect, mental abuse, sexual abuse, sudden change of life events; like loss of job, moving from a once loved environment to an undesirable one due to financial difficulties, bullying, marital problems, natural disasters, menopause, pregnancy, difficulty getting pregnant etc. A lot of psychiatric syndromes recognized depression mood as a main symptom. The term mood disorders contains group of disorders – major depressive disorder, bipolar disorder, anxiety disorder, adjustment disorder with depressed mood ,botherline personality disorder and substance use disorder.



The researchers on the subject of discussion, screened for depression in infertile females attending infertility clinic in Egypt. According to the research work, it was done ‘to determine the severity of depression in relation to duration of infertility and other socio-demographic characteristics in an Egyptian setting’. A six month period was used to study three hundred infertile females and they were screened for depression using the Arabic version of the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9) said the lead researcher; Marwa Mostafe Ahmed. The outcome of the result shows that 62.3% of the studied females suffer from moderate to severe depression. It was also noticed that the score of PHQ-9 was inversely proportionate to both the duration of marriage and the duration of the infertility and direct proportion to the age of the studied females, their educational level, and trials of assisted reproductive technique and these date was statistically significant said the researcher.

Based on their research, it reveals ‘a large percentage of Egyptian infertile females suffer from depression and this highlights the challenging need for providing individualized bio-psychosocial care for all infertile Egyptian females’

It is important to note that depressed mood may not require any professional treatments; a sense of ‘you are not alone’ would go a long way for a change of mood.

More Information

European Journal of Preventive Medicine, Vol 3

A work of Marwa Mostafa Ahmed,Etal. Department of Family and Medicine, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt.



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