Acupuncture for Fertility

What is Acupuncture for Fertility?

Acupuncture is a form of physical medicine that originated in China over 4000 years ago. It uses very thin, sterile needles, inserted into specific points on the body, to manipulate and balance the flow of energy through the body. When we are in balance, our bodies function optimally: our organs function well, our sleep is restful, we are resistant to disease, we recover easily from injury, and our reproductive capacity is functional. For a variety of reasons this balance can become disturbed. Imbalance gives rise to symptoms, including infertility. Acupuncture aims to correct any imbalance, eliminating any and all symptoms that the imbalance caused. Acupuncture for fertility can boost your fertility and increase your chances of success when you are trying to conceive.

How Can Acupuncture Help With Fertility?

Acupuncture can help with all stages in the fertility journey from conception to delivery. Some benefits of acupuncture include:

  • Regulate the menses and increase the blood flow to the uterus
  • Improve sperm count
  • Relieve stress
  • Regulate the hormones and increase ovarian response function
  • Reduce the side effects of hormone treatments
  • Increase and strengthen the immune system
  • Improve the success rate of IVF
  • Decrease the chances of miscarriage and increase the rate of live birth

Acupuncture / Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and PCOS

Acupuncture is extremely effective in regulating hormone levels in the body, and this is quite helpful when treating a patient who has been diagnosed with PCOS and is trying to conceive. By balancing the body’s hormone levels, acupuncture has been shown to make periods more regular and help patients ovulate*. If weight is an issue, acupuncture can also support the PCOS patient by helping with weight loss. It does this through its ability to balance hormones, curb appetite, and reduce stress. Using Chinese herbs is also an effective adjunct to the acupuncture treatments for PCOS.

If a woman is not undergoing assisted reproduction, or is taking “time off” from medicated cycles, there are specific Chinese herbs from the ‘resolve phlegm’ category of herbs in TCM that can reduce masses in the low abdomen, e.g. ovarian cysts. At Pulling Down the Moon®, your practitioner may give you a formula specifically tailored to your TCM diagnosis, which will typically include herbs from the phlegm resolving category. We do not advocate taking herbs during medicated fertility cycles.

The frequency and duration of your acupuncture/herbal therapy at Pulling Down the Moon® is determined at the initial treatment and based on a number of factors. The severity of the PCOS, the patient’s constitutional level, and whether or not a patient is undergoing a medicated fertility treatment cycle are taken into consideration upon your treatment plan.

*Source: Stener-Victorin E et al, Effects of electro-acupuncture on anovulation in women with polycystic ovary syndrome. Acta Obstet Gynecol Scand. 2000 Mar;79(3):180-8