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Table 2 Types and modes of CAM use among couples seeking infertility treatment (n = 87)

From: Prevalence and determinants of complementary and alternative medicine use among infertile patients in Lebanon: a cross sectional study

  Frequency n (%)
Types of CAM modalities used among males (n,%)*  
Functional foods 34 (82.9%)
Spiritual/ prayer therapy 13 (31.7%)
Vitamins and minerals 12 (29.3%)
Herbal therapies 5 (12.2%)
Over the counter supplements 2 (4.9%)
Types of CAM modalities used among females (n,%)*  
Spiritual/ prayer therapy 26 (56.5%)
Herbal therapies 20 (43.5%)
Over the counter supplements 16 (34.8%)
Vitamins and minerals 7 (15.2%)
Reasons for CAM use among males (n,%)*  
Improvement of sperm characteristics 37 (90%)
Relax, feel better psychologically and provide energy 12 (29.3%)
Relief of other reproductive related conditions 2 (4.9%)
Reasons for CAM use among females (n,%)* 6 (6.9%)
Enhance chances of pregnancy 40 (87%)
Relax, feel better psychologically and provide energy 19 (41.3%)
Uterine and ovulatory related reasons 17 (37%)
Relief of other reproductive related conditions 3 (4.3%)
How CAM was chosen (n,%)*  
Personal choice 22 (25.3%)
Friends 42 (48.3%)
Media (Internet, magazines, TV) 29 (33.3%)
Health practitioner 6 (6.9%)
Health food shop 2 (2.3%)
Family beliefs 28 (32.2%)
Frequency of CAM use (n,%)  
Only once 12 (13.8%)
Regularly (2 or more per week for min a month) 61 (70.1%)
Rarely 14 (16.1%)
Why have you used CAM (n,%)*  
Disappointment from conventional medicine 8 (9.2%)
Feeling of having no alternative 10 (11.5%)
Belief in the advantages of CAM 49 (56.3%)
Trying because of a suggestion 45 (51.7%)
Feeling after CAM use (n,%)  
Feeling stronger, physically better and in good psychological condition 43 (49.4%)
No change or physically worse and in bad psychological condition 44 (50.6%)
Usefulness of CAM (n,%)  
Not at all 32 (36.8%)
Some 29 (33.3%)
A lot 15 (17.2%)
Can’t tell 11 (12.6%)
Reporting CAM use to the doctor (n,%)  
No 76 (87.4%)
Yes 11 (12.6%)
Side effects from CAM use (n,%)  
No 81 (93.1%)
Yes 6 (6.9%)
Use of CAM again  
No 34 (39.1%)
Yes 53 (60.9%)
Recommend CAM to other infertile patients  
No 42 (48.3%)
Yes 45 (51.7%)
Reasons for not using CAM among non-users (n = 126) *  
Never heard of it 6 (4.8%)
Afraid of the side effects 25 (19.8%)
Do not believe in it 61 (48.4%)
The doctor didn’t prescribe it 67 (53.2%)
Not to have additional burden 12 (9.5%)
Other** 26 (20.6%)
  1. *Columns do not sum to 100% due to the option of multiple answers.
  2. **Includes: waste of time, lack of proof of their benefit, not in need for them yet, lack of advice on their use, knowing the problem is purely medical, presence of co morbidities, unsafe, unhelpful in this case, prefer conventional treatment.