How can Acupuncture support my IVF treatment?
Acupuncture and moxibustion are known to assist with not only natural fertility but also there is an increasing amount of research that shows that Acupuncture can support higher success rates of IVF assisted pregnancy with the outcome of birthing healthy babies.
Acupuncture, moxibustion and Chinese herbs can support you through your IVF cycle in the following ways.
Preparatory treatment –
Regular treatment preceding your egg harvesting and prior to undergoing your drug regime is recommended to improve the quality of eggs produced. At least 3 months prior is recommended for maximum benefit to positively support follicular development.
During this time we are able to regulate your cycle as Acupuncture and moxibustion are able to directly increase blood flow to the uterus and the ovaries. This results in well-nourished follicles and a regulated period. Improved blood flow to the uterus assists in a complete shedding of the old endometrium and then allowing a fresh healthier endometrial tissue to be grown in the next cycle.
In order for a new life to flourish a thick healthy endometrium is needed so the embryo can firmly anchor its home for the next 9 months.
Many women who have found in the past to have insufficient endometrial thickness (7 mm or less) have experienced thicker fuller lining with the assistance of regular treatments.
Post egg harvest –
Following your egg collection many women can experience over stimulation from drug sensitivity. This can also be an incredibly painful experience. Acupuncture directly after egg harvest is able to assist in pain relief, help your body metabolise the drugs from your body and assist with any side effects from the various medications. Treatment will also assist the uterus prepare for the embryo transfer and successful implantation.
Embryo transfer –
Two treatments, one prior to embryo transfer and one post transfer have been shown to increase continued pregnancy and live birth rates.
After transfer –
Regular treatment is recommended to assist the implantation of the embryo. Once your positive tests are confirmed, continued treatment is recommended to prevent miscarriage for at least for the first twelve weeks.
Undergoing assisted reproductive therapy (ART) can be a stressful time. Regular treatments can help keep your mind calm and your body healthy. Acupuncture is low risk and can be safely integrated with your fertility specialist to give you the highest chance of pregnancy success.
There are some studies that support acupuncture combined with assisted reproductive therapy (ART).
Below is a link to an Australian study in the benefits of acupuncture assisting in reproductive therapies.
Christina Noelle Atkins
Acupuncture & Traditional Chinese Medicine