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The Lived Experience of Infertility: Women Undergoing Ovarian Stimulation with Subsequent Intrauterine Insemination
AuthorTinseth, Ashlee A.
AdvisorDeBoor, Stephanie S.
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The National Survey of Family Growth as reported to the Centers for Disease Control indicates that 7.3 million women and their partners are affected by infertility, which is 12 % of the population of the United Stats. The problem infertile women are facing is that this women's health issue is not improving and not expected to decrease any time soon, in fact an increase is projected. With the number of women seeking fertility treatments doubling over the past decade, it is expected to continue to rise with little known about the psychological and emotional impact of women undergoing the most common treatment for infertility. According to current research, 13% of women underwent intrauterine insemination (IUI) and 3% had another form of fertility treatment such as in vitro fertilization (IVF). Since ovarian simulation with IUI are much more common than more invasive treatments, it is essential for current research to provide the experiences of this treatment. However, there is a paucity of research found within the literature on the experiences and effects of IUI treatment cycles among women. The purpose of this phenomenological study was to explore, describe and gain a deeper understanding of the lived experiences of women enduring fertility treatments, specifically ovarian stimulation and IUI. Utilizing van Manen's six activities of qualitative inquiry, this research contributes to the current literature. A purposeful sample of 5 participants was recruited for this study. Face-to-face, audio-taped interviews were conducted. Colaizzi's 7-step approach was utilized to analyze the data. The data revealed seven main themes which included (1) always waiting, (2) self doubt and questioning, (3) believing in a woman's intuition, (4) reactions to healthcare providers, (5) relating their stories to other women, (6) knowing the endpoint and (7) cautious joy in early pregnancy.