"The way that we deliver news to patients has an impact on their emotional well- being," says Cristina López, reproductive psychologist

It is a well-known fact that patients with fertility problems are under great stress. This is not only due to the uncertainty involved when facing their reproductive project, but also because of how difficult the process can be. This is why emotional support is necessary during IVF treatment. However, there is more. "The attention given by other professionals also influences the mental health of infertility patients", points out the Psychology Interest Group of the Spanish Fertility Society (SEF), coordinated by IVIRMA's psychologist Cristina López.

Emotional resources and tools are important for all professionals involved in the field of reproductive medicine. This starts with the patient care professional who gathers the initial information from the partner or the woman. It extends to the embryologist who monitors the embryos' evolution and reports on their development to the patient.

“One example of the importance of having emotional skills when communicating well with the patient is the call from the IVF laboratory. It is a very critical moment when the patient receives bad news about the progress or quality of her embryos. It must be handled with the utmost tact," advises the psychologist.

The importance of communication and the language used with the patient

Recently, at the 9th National Meeting of SEF Interest Groups, reproductive psychology professionals highlighted the importance of communication and the impact of the language used by different specialists when addressing patients.

"Communicating a pregnancy is easy for everyone, but communicating a negative beta or a biochemical pregnancy is difficult for all. The way we handle it determines, to some extent, how well it will be accepted," explains the psychologist. She suggests that nurses, embryologists, gynaecologists and other specialists involved in the reproductive process should be careful with their emotional skills in order to guarantee the well-being of their patients.

At IVIRMA, we are concerned about mental health and well-being during reproductive treatment. We provide emotional support services for all of our patients. We also train all specialists in this area, regardless of their field of specialisation.

If you work in the field of fertility and would like to learn more about the psychological aspects of infertility and to acquire tools to improve communication and patient follow-up, please refer to our Course of Emotions in Assisted Reproduction Techniques: Counselling and Communicating with Patients.

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