Chinese medicine treated infertility for thousands of years. Western Medicine technologies have treated couples for fertility issues for about 25 years. Recently the success rate in reproductive technologies went up, because drugs and other methods became more precise and sophisticated, but also because more and more clinics routinely combine acupuncture and IFV, which increases the success rate of conceiving to up to 60 %!

Acupuncture and IVF

I believe, that if a woman is going through an IVF cycle, it is very important to bring her health and her partner’s sperm to the most optimum level for the best possible outcome. So, how can we prepare male and female partners for IVF treatment and how can acupuncture and TCM contribute to success in an IVF cycle?

As with any patient, but specifically with IVF patients, we want to do a complete ovary makeover and to do that we need to have about 6-9 months of time. This time frame allows us to remove all the factors that might be toxic to the ovaries and uterus and includes lifestyle changes, like optimizing the diet and removing and minimizing environmental and work pollutants.

It also can give us precious time to really nourish the eggs.

Preparation before IVF

We can’t change ovarian reserve, but if the eggs are well fed and grow in a healthy environment, they would respond better to FSH (Follicle-Stimulation Hormone) stimulation. Estrogen helps improve uterus lining, stimulates more follicles and contributes to better quality egg development. Ideally, we would need to treat a woman at least 3-6 cycles before her IVF/IUI treatment.

Women should be aware of the fact that the eggs take about 120 days to be released. This time of preparation is very important and I use comprehensive protocols with individually designed herbal formulas, acupuncture, nutrition, and meditation techniques to maximize the outcome. More often than not, patients’ call, when they are either about to start a cycle or already in it.

Can acupuncture help? YES!

Acupuncture is extremely beneficial through:

  • Stimulation phase - increases the responsiveness to the stimulation; addresses fertility drugs’ side-effects such as headaches, increased irritability, mood swings, bloating and insomnia
  • On the day of the egg retrieval – reduces the inflammation caused by the surgical procedures; reduces recovery stage, calms the patient
  • On the day of embryo transfer – helps the implantation; improves the blood flow to the uterus; calms the patient
  • Post-transfer phase – helps the embryo to survive, increases the blood flow with nutrients, helps to maintain progesterone levels, maintains uterus lining, calms the patient
  • Reduce the risk of ovarian hyper stimulation – acupuncture helps with abdominal pain and reduces swelling

Building resilience with acupuncture

If a woman doesn’t have a fertility issue herself (and is doing it for her male partner), she can add acupuncture and a herbal regiment to increase her resilience to the stimulating procedure and the negative affect it would have on her body.

For our men, treatments with Chinese Herbs and acupuncture can have an amazing impact on the sperm quality and vitality. See male infertility.

An acupuncture session before sperm donation not only reduces ”performance” and "stage fear" anxiety, but also helps to energize the sperm for their Olympic competition in a petri dish. For acupuncture and IVF treatment in Newport Beach, Mission Viejo, Santa Ana or in the Orange County area please schedule your first complimentary consult below.

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