Investigators from Soroka University Medical Center in Beer-Sheva, Israel, investigated whether hypnosis during embryo transfer contributes to successful fertility outcomes.
In this case-control, clinical study with infertile couples undergoing in vitro fertilization (IVF), 98 IVF/ET cycles with hypnosis were matched with 96 regular IVF/ET cycles. Rates of clinical pregnancy and implantation were then compared between the two groups.
There were 52 clinical pregnancies out of 98 cycles (53.1%), with an implantation rate of 28% among hypnosis IVF/ET cycles, as compared with 29 out of 96 (30.2%) clinical pregnancies and an implantation rate of 14.4% in the control cycles.
Investigators from the Clinique du Mail in La Rochelle, France, conducted a randomized, prospective, controlled study, comparing the efficacy of hypnosis on patients receiving embryo transfer, to measure impact on pregnancy rates and degree of anxiety, as compared to the efficacy of Diazepam (Valium).
Previous research by Levitas et al (2006) showed in a cohort study that hypnosis during embryo transfer (ET) increased the pregnancy ratio by 76%.
In order to evaluate hypnosis during ET in a general population, the authors compared the impact of diazepam (usual premedication) administered before ET plus muscle relaxation, versus hypnosis plus placebo, in 94 patients.
A research team from Boston IVF, a private, academically affiliated infertility center, in Waltham, MA conducted a randomized controlled study with 143 women, 40 years old or less, to determine if a mind-body program, delivered in a group, would yield higher pregnancy rates than treatment as usual.
In a study at the Beth Israel Medical Center in Boston, Alice Domar and her team randomly assigned 184 women who had been trying to get pregnant for 1-2 years into 3 groups: a 10-session cognitive-behavioral group, a standard support group, or a routine care control group. They were followed for 1 year to see how many became pregnant. Sixty-four women discontinued participation in the study. A total of 47 women in the cognitive-behavioral group became pregnant, and 48 in the support group, as opposed to only 25 in the control group. Because these are statistically significant differences, the study concludes that group psychological interventions appear to lead to increased pregnancy rates in infertile women.
Citation: Domar AD, Clapp D, Slawsby EA, Dusek J, Kessel B, and Freizinger M. Impact of group psychological interventions on pregnancy rates in infertile women. Fertility and Sterility, 2000 Jul;74(1):190.