A COUPLE who struggled to conceive for three years are glowing with delight after the chance to take part in a research study led to the arrival of their second child.

Jessica Corbally, 27, and husband Chris, 30, had their first child, Faye, five years ago, but when they started to try for a second they found they were unable to fall pregnant.

After three years of trying, a consultant at the East Lancashire Hospital Trust suggested they take part in a clinical research study to evaluate whether a new procedure results in higher pregnancy rates in couples with unexplained infertility.

Mrs Corbally said: "We didn’t know much about clinical research until the consultant told us about this study. But everything was explained very clearly to us and we felt completely comfortable taking part.."

The procedure involved taking an endometrial biopsy - passing a thin plastic catheter through the cervix and into the womb. Participants are allocated at random to either undergo something called endometrial ‘scratching’, or to undergo a placebo procedure.

Mrs Corbally was not aware which arm of the study she had been allocated to, but after undergoing the procedure was advised to continue trying to conceive for up to three months.

Miraculously, by the end of the three months they'd fallen pregnant, and their son, Joshua, was born on December 20.

Mrs Corbally said: "We had nothing to lose, yet we’ve gained everything. To anybody else, he might be just another baby, but to us, he's a special baby.

"We’ve been given fantastic care from start to finish and feel it’s been an amazing opportunity to take part in a research study like this at our local clinic. Not only have we benefited by having Joshua, we also feel like we have contributed a little something to medical research.

"Once the study has finished and the findings have been published, we’ll be really keen to see the outcome and be proud to know we’ve been part of it. From our experience, we would definitely encourage anybody, no matter what their condition, to enquire about any research studies they might be able to take part in."

Principal Investigator for the study, Shankaralingaiah Nethra, said: "Offering women and their partners involvement in fertility studies is imperative to enable us to continue to strive for answers during what can be difficult and very emotional journeys for couples."

The study is part of an ongoing trial, being conducted at multiple hospitals, to assess its wide-scale effectiveness. It is not available yet available on the NHS.