Acupuncture

Acupuncture is the ancient art of healing using small needles to improve organ function.  This technique is used all over the world but has its roots in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM).  In recent years, acupuncture has become front line treatment for helping couples to conceive.  There has been a tremendous amount of research that has identified that acupuncture promotes circulation to different areas of the body which positively impacts reproductive health.  When used in conjunction with assisted therapies, it has been shown to double the rate of successful pregnancies.

Many Canadian couples have what I term “hypofertility”.  They should be able to conceive but their bodies are not at an optimal state to do so.  Acupuncture can improve ovarian function, promote follicle production and enhance uterine blood flow thereby improving uterine lining thickness.

Acupuncture assists in improving the likelihood of pregnancy by:

  • Improving overall health of reproductive organs and addressing “hypofertility state”
  • Improving IVF success rates – done before and after IVF treatment, results increase by almost 50%
  • Addressing digestive issues that create inflammation which in turn impairs fertility
  • Promoting safe and effective detoxification of harmful substances that disrupt cellular function

 

References

1. Maciocia G: Obsteterics and gynecology in Chinese medicine. New York: Churchill Liningstone, 1998.

2. Stener-Victorin E, Waldenstrom U, Tagnfors U, Lundeberg T, Lindstedt G, Janson PO: Effects of electro-acupuncture on anovulation in women with polycystic ovary syndrome. Acta Obstet Gynecol Scand 2000; 79(3): 180-8.

3. Stener-Victorin E, Waldenstrom U, Andersson SA, Wikland M: Reduction of blood flow impedance in the uterine arteries of infertile women with electro-acupuncture. Hum Reprod 1996; 11(6): 1314-7.

4. Highfield ES, Laufer MR, Schnyer RN, Kerr CE, Thomas P, Wayne PM: Adolescent endometriosis-related pelvic pain treated with acupuncture: two case reports. J Altern Complement Med 2006; 12(3): 317-22.

5. Helms JM: Acupuncture for the management of primary dysmenorrhea. Obstet Gynecol 1987; 69(1): 51-6.

6. Dieterle S, Ying G, Hatzmann W, Neuer A: Effect of acupuncture on the outcome of in vitro fertilization and intracytoplasmic sperm injection: a randomized, prospective, controlled clinical study. Fertil Steril 2006; 85(5): 1347-51.

7. Emmons S, Patton P: Acupuncture treatment for infertile women undergoing intracytoplasmic sperm injection. Medical Acupuncture: A Journal for Physicians by Physicians 2000; 12(2).

8. Johnson D: Acupuncture prior to and at embryo transfer in an assisted conception unit–a case series. Acupunct Med 2006; 24(1): 23-8.
9. Paulus WE, Zhang M, Strehler E, El-Danasouri I, Sterzik K: Influence of acupuncture on the pregnancy rate in patients who undergo assisted reproduction therapy. Fertil Steril 2002; 77(4): 721-4.

10. Westergaard LG, Mao Q, Krogslund M, Sandrini S, Lenz S, Grinsted J: Acupuncture on the day of embryo transfer significantly improves the reproductive outcome in infertile women: a prospective, randomized trial. Fertil Steril 2006; 85(5): 1341-6.

11. Smith C, Coyle M, Norman RJ: Influence of acupuncture stimulation on pregnancy rates for women undergoing embryo transfer. Fertil Steril 2006; 85(5): 1352-8.

12. Paulus WE, Zhang M, Strehler E, Seybold B, Sterzik K: Placebo-controlled trial of acupuncture effects in assisted repoduction therapy. Human Reprod 2003; 18(suppl 1): xviii18.

13. Cummings M: The terms ‘acupuncture’ and ‘placebo’ should be adequately defined in clinical trials. Complement Ther Med 2003; 11(2): 123; author reply 123-4.

14. Suzuki H, Takahashi J, Kobayashi M, Ochi M: Nanchisei funinshou ni taisuru shinkyu chiryou no kentou 1 (Acupuncture treatment on intractable infertility – 1st report: Summary of 57 cases of insufficient endometrium lining treated with ART and acupuncture). Journal of the Japan Society of Acupuncture and Moxibustion 2002; 52(3): 309.

15. Takahashi J, Kobayashi M, Suzuki H, Ochi M: Nanchisei funinshou ni taisuru shinkyu chiryou no kentou – 2 (Acupuncture treatment on intractable infertility – 2nd report: Summary of 24 cases of idiopathic infertility treated with ART and acupuncture). Journal of the Japan Society of Acupuncture and Moxibustion 2002; 52(3): 310.

16. Nishijo K, Mori H, Tsukayama H, Yamashita H: Scientific Approach for Acupuncture. Journal of the Japan Society of Acupuncture and Moxibustion 1995; 45(3): 177-191.

17. Tanaka TH: The Possibilities for Optimizing Acupuncture Treatment Results through Synchronization with Somatic State: Examination of Autonomic Response to Superficial Needling During Exhalation. American Journal of Acupuncture 1996; 24(4): 233-239.

18. Bonica JJ: Applied Anatomy Relevant to Pain. In: Bonica JJ, ed. The Management of Pain, 2nd ed, vol Vol. 1. Pjiladelphia: Lea & Febiger, 1990; 133-158.

19. Uchida S, Hotta H, Kagitani F, Aikawa Y: Ovarian blood flow is reflexively regulated by mechanical afferent stimulation of a hindlimb in nonpregnant anesthetized rats. Auton Neurosci 2003; 106(2): 91-7.

20. Uchida S, Kagitani F, Hotta H, Hanada T, Aikawa Y: Cutaneous Mechanical Stimulation Regulates Ovarian Blood Flow via Activation of Spinal and Supraspinal Reflex Pathways in Anesthetized Rats. Jpn J Physiol 2005; 55(5): 265-77.

21. Hotta H, Uchida S, Shimura M, Suzuki H: Uterine contractility and blood flow are reflexively regulated by cutaneous afferent stimulation in anesthetized rats. J Auton Nerv Syst 1999; 75(1): 23-31.

22. Chang R, Chung PH, Rosenwaks Z: Role of acupuncture in the treatment of female infertility. Fertil Steril 2002; 78(6): 1149-53.

23. Lima AP, Moura MD, Rosa e Silva AA: Prolactin and cortisol levels in women with endometriosis. Braz J Med Biol Res 2006; 39(8): 1121-7.