Acupuncture for fertility treatment

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What is acupuncture?

Acupuncture is a branch of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM).

In TCM the body is described as having an “energy” flowing through it called “Chi”. This energy is said to flow along “meridians” that are channels throughout the body. An “acupuncturist” inserts needles at certain points on these meridians which are said to block or aid the flow of Chi and so bring balance and ultimately health to the body and mind.

Acupuncture for the treatment of infertility

Acupuncture helps by addressing problems that affect fertility such as an under-functioning thyroid (hypothyroidism) or over-functioning thyroid (hyperthyroidism).

Acupuncture is frequently combined with herbal medicine. This combination has been used for centuries to treat some but not all causes of infertility. For example, acupuncture and herbs will not work to address tubal adhesions which can occur as a result of pelvic inflammatory disease or endometriosis.

However, in this situation, an individual could still benefit from acupuncture and herbs because of the potential effect of improved ovarian and follicular function. Additionally, acupuncture can increase blood flow to the endometrium, helping to facilitate a thick, rich lining.

Acupuncture is similar to physical therapy in that the more sessions and treatment you have the more likely the treatment will work. It is better to do more than less. Patients are commonly treated for three to four months before progressing to insemination, in vitro fertilization (IVF), or donor-egg transfer. This pacing of treatment seems to have a therapeutic effect.

Acupuncture and other therapies

It is important that anyone considering any complimentary medicine should not stop getting advice and help from conventional medical sources.  If you feel that acupuncture may help with becoming pregnant you must still consult a doctor and continue taking any prescribed medicines

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