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Health Forum Online    The Psychologist's Source for C.E. Credits Online

Experiencing Infertility: The Psychological Care of Individuals and Couples

by Kerry Sherman, PhD 3 CE Credits

It is estimated that 1 in every 6 couples of childbearing age experience some form of compromised fertility or medically diagnosable infertility. Whether or not to pursue infertility treatment and undergo assisted reproduction constitutes a major life decision for patients, decisions that are often accompanied by stressful medical procedures and psychological sequelae no matter what the outcome. The information in this course serves as a resource for mental health professionals and allied healthcare providers who work with infertile patients and highlights the need for a broad approach that encompasses the concerns of the individual, as well as the couple as a dyad and the family as a unit. The course discusses and addresses issues that present in the care of infertility patients. Broad theoretical models within Health Psychology and empirically-based infertility-specific data guide the course content.


This online course is approved for APA CE credit, NBCC CE clock hours and ASWB Clinical CE clock hours. NYSED CEs are NOT approved for this online course.


Course Sections/Outline:

  • Introduction
  • The Etiology of Infertility
  • Treatment of Infertility
  • Psychological Impact of Infertility and Infertility Treatment
  • Where Are Patients on the Infertility Continuum?
  • Infertility-Related Stress: What Contributes To It?
  • The Experience of Loss and Grief: The Common Denominator
  • Coping with Infertility: Adaptive Vs. Maladaptive
  • The Path Following Successful Infertility Treatment
  • Psychological and Psychosocial Interventions with Infertility Patients
  • Summary
  • Web-based Resources
  • References

Learning Objectives:

After completing this course, health professionals will be able to:
  • Discuss the 4 views on the etiology of infertility, the 4 commonly used infertility treatments and the empirical evidence on the psychological adjustment to infertility.
  • Identify 3 of the common psychological responses to infertility treatment and individual differences in coping of males and females.
  • Indicate the 3 main psychological techniques that facilitate adaptation to infertility and its treatment and their clinical application within the infertility population.