Nowadays, IVF has become the most common infertility treatment however its success rate is still relatively low. So how can the success rate of IVF be increased? Can acupuncture make a difference? Well according to research, acupuncture may actually be beneficial for couples undergoing IVF.
Acupuncture is an ancient therapeutic method, used quite often as a complementary medical practice, based on the use of very thin needles inserted in certain points of the body for treating various medical conditions. Acupuncture, it is believed to help treat medical conditions that affect fertility such as hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, polycystic ovarian syndrome, menstrual cycle irregularities and more.
Several studies in the past have pointed out that women who undergone an acupuncture program in parallel with their IVF treatment had greater success rates than women who did not do acupuncture.
According to one study by researchers at the Maryland Center for Integrative Medicine and the University of Maryland Center for Assisted Reproductive Technology , the VU University of Amsterdam and researchers from Georgetown University which involved a review of 7 clinical trials, women having acupuncture could significantly increase their chances of getting pregnant. Researchers analysed data from over 1.300 women who underwent IVF. They examined the effect of acupuncture given within one day of embryo transfer.
They compared these results with those of women given sham acupuncture and no additional treatment and found “acupuncture group” pregnancy chances increased by 65%. Women participated in the study were of different ages, they were all however given acupuncture sessions (lasted for 25 to 30 min) right before of right after the embryo transfer.
But how could acupuncture help increase fertility and IVF success rates?
According to experts acupuncture supports IVF by:
1. Regulating reproductive hormone levels including FSH and LH
2. Improving the immune system and well-being
3. Increasing utero-ovarian blood flow and consequently improving the quality of the endometrium, promoting embryo implantation
4. Improving the quality of the eggs, necessary for successful fertilisation
So, would you give acupuncture a chance?
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