Your experiences of work and fertility treatment

Dealing with work when you’re going through fertility treatment can be extremely difficult.  When I started my first cycle of IVF, I imagined I was going to be able to fit it neatly around my work, but rapidly realised that it’s not that simple.  I was soon more worried about how I was coping with work and IVF than I was about the treatment itself.  In the end, I took a few days off in the lead-up to egg collection which made all the difference.

At Infertility Network UK, we carried out a survey into work and IVF some years back and were surprised at what a tough experience many people had as they tried to balance their work and treatment.  Now, a team from Middlesex University are carrying out a research project looking at this, and they need your help.  I met some of the team earlier this week, and would urge anyone who may be interested to contact them as this kind of work could help other fertility patients in the future – and they are really nice people!

They are hoping to talk to men and women who are using assisted conception services, or have used them in the last 5 years, and who, at least at the start of treatment, were in full-time employment.  They are hoping to explore how people combine work and fertility treatment, and are considering what might make things easier.

Participating in this research will involve an interview of about an hour, which can be done at your home, at Middlesex University in London or by telephone. The interview will explore your views and experiences relating to your job, and of using assisted conception and wishing to become a parent, and of combining the two, including positive and negative experiences, as well as your views on the support you have received or would like to receive.

The interview is anonymous and totally confidential.  Although it will be recorded and transcribed, the transcript will only be seen by the four members of the research team. Analysis of the transcripts will involve examining themes that occur across all the interviews. Some short quotes may be used to illustrate particular themes, and if this is the case any potentially identifying features will be removed and the quotes will be totally anonymous.  Consent forms will also be kept separately from interviews to protect anonymity.

If you decide to take part, you may withdraw at any time, even during the interview, without giving a reason.

If you think you might be interested and would like to know more, you can contact the research team by emailing Dr Nicola Payne –


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