How Clowns Can Help You Get Pregnant
Dr. Shevach Friedler, of Israel’s Assaf Harofeh Medical Center, tracked the success rates of two groups of women seeking treatment for infertility. One group of women had undergone a standard in vitro fertilization procedure (IVF); the second group received the same IVF treatment, but in addition to the implanting of an embryo, they also spent fifteen minutes with a clown immediately following the IVF procedure.
The results of Dr. Friedler’s study, which were published this month in the medical journal Fertility and Sterility, reported that the group of women subjected to fifteen minutes of a “medical clown” telling jokes, performing magic tricks, and well, just clowning around, experienced about a 16% greater pregnancy success rate than did the clown-free group.
Although the experiment will need to be replicated in order to verify the statistical significance of the results, members of Dr. Friedler’s research group remain optimistic. They believe that the clown’s knack for reducing patient stress following a stressful IVF procedure may prove instrumental in improving a woman’s chances for pregnancy.
Shevach Friedler, M.D et al. The effect of medical clowning on pregnancy rates after in vitro fertilization and embryo transfer (IVF-ET). Fertility and Sterility, published online 06 January 2011, doi:10.1016/j.fertnstert.2010.12.016
Photo Credit: Thomas Hawk
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