Here are two really great articles on the successful use of Acupuncture for Fertility and Successful Pregnancy and Birthing
Acupuncture ‘helps women have babies’
Chinese treatment raises success rate of IVF
• Denis Campbell, health correspondent
• The Observer, Sunday September 21 2008
Women undergoing fertility treatment are far more likely to successfully give birth if they also have acupuncture, a major scientific study has concluded.
The research found that women suffering with fertility problems who underwent the ancient Chinese treatment increased their chance of having a baby from one in five to one in three. Acupuncture involves inserting extremely fine needles into specific points on the body, along qi energy channels, to stimulate the body’s own healing system.
The finding will offer hope to the 33,000 women a year who undertake IVF treatment, many of whom are willing to make any change to their lifestyle or health routine that might increase their chances of becoming a mother.
Researchers led by Ying Cheong, from the reproductive medicine unit at the University of Southampton and the city’s Princess Anne hospital, concluded that ‘acupuncture around the time of embryo transfer achieves a higher live birth rate of 35 per cent compared with 22 per cent without active acupuncture’. Embryo transfer is when an embryo that has been fertilised in the laboratory is implanted into a woman’s womb. The research found that the chance of the embryo implanting successfully, resulting in pregnancy, increased significantly if a woman underwent acupuncture around the same time as the transfer.
‘Our research is good news because it shows that acupuncture can help with fertility in patients undergoing IVF. Whether or not acupuncture helps women achieve a live birth is a controversial issue, and opinion has been divided on it,’ said Cheong. ‘We show that acupuncture, performed at the right stage, can have significant benefit. A woman who does so has a much greater chance of having a live birth than a woman who doesn’t have acupuncture.’
Acupuncture Clinical Trial a Boon for Women Experiencing Fertility Challenges
September 3, 2008 — Getting pregnant with her first child was difficult, and when Rebecca Killmeyer of Charlottesville, Va. experienced a miscarriage during her second pregnancy, she wasn’t sure if she would ever have another baby. She decided to enter a study testing the impact of acupuncture on women with polycystic ovary syndrome at the University of Virginia Health System, and came out with a miracle.
“To our great surprise, we were blessed with a third pregnancy during the PCOS study,” said Killmeyer. “I’m absolutely certain the acupuncture treatments helped me ovulate regularly, which allowed me to become pregnant.” Lisa Pastore, assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the U.Va. Health System and principal researcher of the study, said her goal has been to help women with PCOS have regular menstrual cycles. PCOS causes a hormonal imbalance, interfering with ovulation and ultimately, fertility. With several women in the study reporting pregnancies, Pastore believes that acupuncture could be an important drug-free therapy for women with this disorder.
“Over the last year we have seen women who never had a regular menstrual cycle start having regular periods. We can also boast several pregnancies since the study began,” she said. “Now we would like to recruit more people in order to complete the study. It is important for research to have enough participants to ensure that the results are scientifically credible and not due to chance.” Killmeyer said she was initially skeptical about the experimental treatment.. ”When I saw those tiny little needles coming at me, I thought to myself, ‘I didn’t sign up for this!,’ but I tried it and after a few minutes I was asleep on the table,” Killmeyer said. “The sessions were completely refreshing after awhile.” Killmeyer learned of her PCOS in 2005. Over the past five years she did not have regular, monthly periods. One month after she started acupuncture treatments, she got a period and for the next three months, they continued.
“I had finished all my acupuncture treatments and was in the end stages of the study when I became pregnant,” Killmeyer said. “We had already scheduled our follow-up appointment with our fertility doctors when we found out we were pregnant.” Five percent of reproductive-age women are affected by PCOS.
Symptoms may include small cysts on their ovaries, infrequent or irregular vaginal bleeding, male-pattern hair growth and acne. Insulin resistance and pre-diabetes also can develop. While many traditional drugs and therapies may manage this syndrome, Pastore’s research is assessing whether acupuncture can be successful in regulating hormones and curing the symptoms of PCOS.