Can a clown get you pregnant?
An Israeli study shows that for women who undergo In-Vitro Fertilization treatment, a good laugh can significantly increase the chances to conceive.
The idea for the study came after Professor Shevach Friedler of Assaf Harofe Medical Centre learned about the potential of laugher as a “natural anti-stress mechanism.”
Friedler said, “Naturally I thought why not to use laughter, which is a very cheap intervention, and to use this powerful tool to ease the big stress that our patients are in.”
More than 200 women took part in the research. Half of them were entertained by a medical clown for about 15 minutes, after the embryos were transferred into their wombs.
“To our amazement, and actually in a second thought it was quite logical, we found that this intervention actually increase significantly the implantation rate,” said Friedler .
So-called “clown care” has long been used at medical centers around the world. Friedler says it is more effective than more passive kinds of comedy, but needs to be tailor-made for these types of patients.
Friedler says, “We had to find, it wasn’t easy, to find the correct personage of the clown. For instance, the red nose clown does not work. It does not work for women in fertility age.”
Shlomi Algusi, the medical clown who took part in Friedler’s research, said he has yet to realize the full extent of his part in creating new life.
“I can go back home after doing something wonderful — making people laugh — which is my job. And then it happened and women brought children into this world and it made me happy… I honestly can’t even grasp it, I can’t even believe that it’s actually happening,” says Algusi.
Friedler says the reactions from patients have been great.
An anonymous woman undergoing IVF said, “He walked in and as much as I felt pain after leaving there (treatment room), everything just faded and he really relieved all the pressure and was very useful for me. I hope it will help in the future.”
Friedler hopes for studies at other centers to back up his findings and encourage fertility clinics elsewhere to use the tactic.
Bottom line: A medical clown can help you get pregnant. Israeli medical research finds that laughter significantly increases success rate in In-Vitro Fertilization (IVF) treatment.