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Adoption Can Boost Quality of Life for Infertile Couples, Study Finds

MONDAY, Nov. 19 (HealthDay News) -- Couples who adopt children after unsuccessful treatment for fertility problems typically have a high quality of life, a new study finds.

Swedish researchers compared outcomes for a variety of types of couples: those whose in-vitro fertilization (IVF) treatment failed; those whose IVF treatment resulted in children; couples who decided to adopt after unsuccessful IVF treatment; and couples with no fertility problems.

The couples who underwent IVF treatment were assessed five years after their treatment. Quality of life among the more than 970 men and women was measured as psychological well-being and a feeling of connection.

Quality of life was highest among couples who adopted children after unsuccessful IVF treatment and lowest among couples who remained childless after their IVF treatment had failed, the investigators found.

The study was published in a recent issue of the journal Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica.

"This shows that quality of life is strongly linked with children, irrespective of whether they're the result of spontaneous pregnancies, adoption or stepchildren," Marie Berg, a professor at the Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, said in a university news release.

"The results show that it can be important to consider adoption as soon as couples seek medical help for infertility, especially now that we know that adoption enhances quality of life. As things stand, the issue of adoption is pursued only once IVF treatment has failed," she noted.

More information

The American Academy of Pediatrics has more about adoption.

-- Robert Preidt

SOURCE: University of Gothenburg, news release, Nov. 12, 2012

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