Verhaak, Chris

Verhaak , Chris
Dr  Chris  Verhaak 

Associate Professor

Mitochondrial diseases


The aim of Dr Verhaak's research is to increase our knowledge concerning the psychological correlates of reproduction.  It builds on a substantial track record of research into the adjustment of infertile couples to treatment progress and treatment outcome. Her team identified risk factors for emotional adjustment problems and translated these risk factors into an effective screening instrument that was subsequently implemented in daily clinical practice. Based on the psychological risk profile that resulted from the screening, personalized online cognitive therapy modules were developed and tested in a randomized controlled trial. Recently, the focus was extended to threatened fertility of children and young adults with cancer. She aims to increase our knowledge on how to facilitate possible fertility preservation treatments tailored to the needs and preferences of cancer patients and their partners/ parents. In addition, it is her goal to increase knowledge of how to optimally inform ex cancer patients (but also patients with other medical conditions threatening their fertility) on fertility preservation options. Dr Verhaak's research in pediatrics is focused on facilitating development of children with chronic conditions to autonomous adults. She focuses on children and adolescents with cancer, diabetes, asthma and CF, and also on children with disorders in sexual development. Her mission is to allow children with chronic medical conditions to grow up as autonomous adults confident about their body, their identity and their intimate relationships. Core characteristic of her research and her career is the direct link between scientific knowledge and daily clinical practice.  This is realized by close collaboration between psychologists, gynaecologists, pediatricians and nurse practitioners and also by a combination of research and clinical work with the patients involved. This is imbedded in close multidisciplinary national and international collaborations.