An analysis of data on more than 41,000 Danish women who received assisted reproductive fertility treatment shows that unsuccessful treatment is not linked with an increased risk of clinically diagnosed depression compared with successful treatment.
The analysis also found that becoming a mother is an important trigger of clinically diagnosed depression after childbirth among women who conceive after fertility treatment, even though the child is long-awaited. The stress of having a new child thus seems to matter more in terms of developing clinical depression than undergoing infertility treatment.
"These findings regard the most severe cases of depression diagnoses as the women are all diagnosed and treated in a hospital setting," said Camilla Sejbaek, lead author of the Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica study. "It is important to remember that fertility treatment is straining; however, our findings showed that women undergoing assisted reproductive fertility treatment are at risk of clinically diagnosed severe depression after a child birth."