Prenatal attachment in pregnancy following assisted reproductive technology: a literature review

Fahimeh Ranjbar, J. Catja Warmelink, Maryam Gharacheh

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Objective: To summarise the literature on prenatal attachment in pregnancies following Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART). Background: Prenatal attachment can predict the quality of the postpartum parent–infant relationship and is linked to perinatal mental health of the parents and their adjustment to the parental role. It might be expected prenatal attachment will be influenced by fertility treatment such as ART, but there are contradictory results. Methods: In this review, studies with a cross-sectional and longitudinal design, published in 1990–2019 were included. A search was conducted in MEDLINE/PubMed, EMbase, Web of Science and Scopus, and using the Google Scholar search engine. A total of 17 articles were found which met the inclusion criteria and after these articles were reviewed using the STROBE-checklist, 15 articles were included in the study. Results: In most couples who conceived following ART, the level of prenatal attachment was either similar to or higher than in couples who conceive without ART. Conclusions: The findings challenge the idea that infertility problems affect attachment in pregnancies following ART. However, ART- couples may be more susceptible to anxiety due to pregnancy loss and support may be better focused on the pregnancy-related anxiety in these couples rather than any attachment intervention.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)86-108
Number of pages23
JournalJOURNAL OF REPRODUCTIVE AND INFANT PSYCHOLOGY
Volume38
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2020

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