FERTILITY ENHANCEMENT PREGNANCY AND LABOUR
Current statistics state that one in five couples over the age of 30 have difficulty conceiving
after one year of trying. Many of these couples are turning to acupuncture and Oriental
medicine for a safe, effective and natural solution to have a healthy baby.
Oriental medicine has a long history when it comes to enhancing fertility for
both men and women. In fact, evidence that acupuncture and herbal medicine have been
used to aid fertility can be found in early medical literature dating back to 3AD.
A local doctor was told by experts she would probably never conceive a baby,
but she found success from a source that surprised even her.
How Acupuncture and TCM can enhance fertility.
Regulates the menstrual cycle
Regulates hormones by reducing stress
Improves the thickness of the uterine wall lining
Reduces uterine contractions after the embryo transfer
Improves blood flow to the ovaries and uterus
Improves ovarian function – encourages the production of follicles
and enhances their quality
Enhances the immune system
Reduces the chance of miscarriage
Improves sperm parameters ( takes at least 3 months)
Improves quality of oocytes (takes at least 3 months
Acupuncture and Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART)
For the best results acupuncture should begin at least 3 months prior to
Generally treatments are given once a week. For optimal results a treatment is
given 12-48 hours before and after embryo transfer.
Acupuncture and Natural Conception
If you are attempting to become pregnant through natural means, acupuncture can
benefit you by balancing the flow of Qi (energy) and blood in the body. When Qi and
blood are not flowing smoothly clots, blocked tubes, premenstrual pain and
endometriosis can occur. Stress is a big factor in infertility and acupuncture can help
the body relax while stress management techniques can also be of benefit.
The clinic offers stress management therapists.
Diet and Lifestyle
Diet and nutrition are of the utmost importance to both male and females for optimal results
in fertility. Dietary advice is given by qualified nutritional advisors throughout the course of
treatment, as required and a qualified stress management therapist can help with breathing
and relaxation techniques.
Symptoms Acupuncture can treat in relation to Infertility
irregular Menstrual Cycle
Premenstrual Cramps, pain and clots
Lack of ovulation
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)
Low Sperm Count
Poor Motility Rates
Acupuncture During Pregnancy
Once pregnancy occurs, medication is usually prohibited therefore acupuncture is the ideal
tool to help with morning sickness, coughs, colds, headaches, back pain, constipation, tiredness
and the many afflictions the human body has to deal with daily. It can also be used to induce
labour and to turn breach babies if necessary.
Is acupuncture safe during pregnancy?
Yes, acupuncture is safe – and effective – during pregnancy.
Acupuncture is not a substitute for Western prenatal medical care. Instead, it offers complementary
care that has many benefits. And because acupuncture has very few side effects, many pregnant
women now seek this alternative to drug therapy for a number of common pregnancy complaints.
The modern practice of acupuncture is based on historical diagnostic theories, with roots for
treatment in pregnancy that go back for over 2,000 years. But its use today relies on modern,
evidence-based medicine and standards of safety. For example, acupuncture by licensed
practitioners has strict standards for needle sterility and safety.
Studies have shown acupuncture to be effective for stress, morning sickness, hip and
low back pain, breech position, mild to moderate depression, labor induction, and shortening the
length of labor.
In vitro fertilisation (known as IVF) is the name given to a technique where eggs are
fertilised with sperm outside the body, usually in a test tube. It is widely practised throughout
the world and has enabled many couples to successfully conceive and give birth.
IVF can be an emotional roller coaster for the people involved. It is physically invasive
and puts a mental and physical toll on the body. Success rates vary, but the average is 26%.
It is expensive, and more than one cycle may be required.
Acupuncture can enhance the IVF experience, and improve the success rates.
It is recommended by many professionals eg, Deborah Betts, Clane Fertility Clinic,
The British Medical Journal, Zita West, and the Dublin Acupuncture And Allergy Testing Clinic,
to name but a few.
Did you know that Traditional Chinese Acupuncture may increase pregnancy rates by 65%
when combined with IVF
Increased Success of IVF when done in conjunction with Acupuncture
A recent study done by Paulus in Germany surveyed 160 women who had IVF treatment.
80 of the women had acupuncture before and after transfer of the embryo and 80 did not.
The group that did not have acupuncture were found to have a 26.3% success rate, while
the group that had the acupuncture had a 42.5% success rate. Success was determined by
those who had a successful scan confirming pregnancy at 6 weeks pregnant. This clinic
includes this protocol for those women undergoing IVF treatment. If you would like to
read more about this: PubMed
The effects of acupuncture on IVF and ICSI:
A randomised controlled clinical study on 225 patients was carried out. In group
one 116 patients received acupuncture, while in group two 109 patients received a
placebo. The pregnancy rates for IVF and ICSI in group one were double the rate of
group two. Conclusion: Acupuncture can be of great benefit to IVF and ICSI.
Acupuncture promoting ovulation
We have selected a few research articles that show the success of acupuncture
in relation to treating lack of ovualtion:
Clinical observation on acupuncture for treatment of infertility of ovulatory
disturbance. If you would like to read more:
Acupuncture in polycystic ovary syndrome: current experimental and
clinical evidence. If you would like to read more:
Advances of modern studies of acupuncture and moxibustion for treatment of
ovulation disorders. If you would like to read more:
Acupuncture can reduce miscarriages
Acupuncture During IVF linked to lower ectopic and miscarriage rate. The retrospective
study included 131 women who were undergoing standard in vitro fertilization (IVF) or
intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). All of these women were considered good
prognosis candidates for IVF/ICSI and were given the choice of having acupuncture.
48 had acupuncture and 83 did not. In the group that had acupuncture the miscarriage
rate was nearly halved. 14% miscarriages in non acupuncture group versus 8% miscarriage
in acupuncture group. Ectopic pregnancies were 9% in non acupuncture group versus 0% in
acupuncture group. Live birth rate for non acupuncture group was 16% versus 21% in
acupuncture group.If you would like to read more:
Caffeine Intake linked to Miscarriage Rates
A new study has found that pregnant women who consumed more than 200 milligrams
of caffeine a day, equivalent to about two cups of coffee, had twice the risk of miscarriage
as the women who consumed no caffeine at all. The findings are published in the Journal
of Obstetrics and Gynecology. If you would like to read more:
Acupuncture can help male infertility
A study of 40 men with idiopathic oligospermia, asthenospermia, or teratozoospermia has
shown a general improvement of sperm quality, specifically in the ultrastructural integrity of
spermatozoa, after acupuncture. If you would like to read more:
Another study of 19 men with semen abnormalities showed that acupuncture and moxa
techniques significantly increase the percentage of normal-form sperm in infertile patients
with oligoastenoteratozoospermia without apparent cause. If you would like to read more:
Another study of 22 patients was done to gague the influence of acupuncture on
idiopathic male infertility in assisted reproductive technology. It showed the The
fertilization rates after acupuncture (66.2%) were obviously higher than that before
treatment (40.2%, P < 0.01). There was no significant difference in sperm concentration
and general sperm motility between before and after acupuncture. The embryo quality
after acupuncture was improved, but the difference between them was not significant
(P > 0.05). Acupuncture can improve sperm quality and fertilization rates in assisted
reproductive technology. If you would like to read more:
is one of the most common problems affecting female fertility. At the clinic we treat PCOS,
with a combination of Acupuncture, Chinese Medicine, Diet and Lifestyle Changes.
Here are some interesting articles about PCOS.
Diet is one of the key elements in the fight against PCOS.
The effect of acupuncture on polycystic ovarian syndrome:
25 patients were treated with acupuncture. Result 20 patients recovered regular
menstruation. 10 of the 16 patients with sterility were able to become pregnant.
Acupuncture can safely and effectively treat PCOS.
You don’t have to suffer from morning sickness!!!
labour and prebirth
Acupuncture offers safe yet effective help for every stage of fertility enhancement pregnancy and labour.
Joanne Mc Govern – Dip Ac., Lic Ac., Dip. Chinese Herbs, Dip. Nutritional Advisor,
Dip Stress Management.