Acupuncture is probably the most popular and commonly used alternative therapy for infertility. Research related to acupuncture and fertility are published by media every few months. There is a growing trend of using acupuncture services along with conventional fertility treatments like IVF and IUI. But you have to realize that although there is a lot of excitement concerning acupuncture and infertility, some of the claimed benefits of acupuncture are not well documented. According to some studies the pregnancy rates improve for those who try acupuncture, but some other studies have shown no or non-statistically significant results.
What types of fertility patients typically get acupuncture?
Acupuncture, along with herbal medicine, has been used for centuries to treat infertility.
Acupuncture has been used to treat several type of fertility disorder like:
Spasm of tubes: The spasm in the tubes can be relieved with acupuncture, but blocked tubes will not respond to acupuncture.
Hormonal problems related to pregnancy: like acupuncture along with herbal treatment can elevate follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteal phase defect,
Repeated pregnancy loss,
Unexplained (idiopathic) infertility,
Hyperprolactinemia (when not caused by a prolactinoma),
Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) with anovulatory cycles, and
In men sperm-DNA-fragmentation.
When should acupuncture treatment begin for infertility?
It is better to do more acupuncture than less. Most experts on acupuncture recommend that if you are planning to go for acupuncture for infertility it should be started three to four months before an insemination, in vitro fertilization (IVF), or donor-egg transfer. In patients undergoing acupuncture to prevent miscarriage it should be done for the first three months of pregnancy---the period in which most miscarriages occur.
How Does Acupuncture Work to Enhance Fertility?
Acupuncture for infertility treatment:
Enhances Egg Quality: Studies on clients who have undergone acupuncture indicate that the egg quality significantly improves.
Enhances the Quality of the Uterine Lining: The uterine lining needs to be healthy –this is necessary for embryo implantation and growth of a healthy baby. Acupuncture can help to increase the flow of healthy blood into the uterus.
Reduces the risk of uterine Contraction After IVF procedures: Acupuncture has relaxing effect on the patient and the uterus ---this decreases the risk of uterine contraction and expulsion of fertilized egg. According to a European Study acupuncture increases pregnancy rates in women undergoing In-Vitro Fertilization.
Treats menstrual cycle disorders: Acupuncture can improve the menstrual cycle disorders and thereby the chances of fertility
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