Fertility Study Confirms Efficacy of Acupuncture
A recent study gives more credence to the claim that acupuncture augments conventional types of infertility treatment. New research conducted by Dr. Lee Rubin shows that acupuncture and other forms of Traditional Chinese Medicine improve fertility more than IVF alone. She found that women who were treated with "Whole Systems TCM" while going through IVF achieved 109% more live births.
This study further supports previous research finding acupuncture improves pregnancy success rates. In a 2012 study, acupuncture was shown to be more successful than Clomid in helping women achieve pregnancy. Clomid is a pill used to induce or enhance ovulation. In another study, acupuncture increased the ovulation of women with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, which is a major cause of infertility. The first clinical trial examining acupuncture's ability to enhance fertility took place in Germany in 2002.
These studies do not show exactly why acupuncture is able to improve fertility. However, it is theorized that the whole body healing approach improves the functioning of many major organs and hormonal responses. For example, acupuncture improves blood flow to the uterus and ovaries. Proper blood flow is needed for the embryo to implant successfully. Further, acupuncture helps balance the endocrine system, which in turn regulates a woman's hormones.
Accumulating positive research findings are encouraging doctors to suggest acupuncture to their patients struggling with infertility.
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When labor begins, but then stops, acupuncture may also be a safe method to stimulate consistent, labor inducing contractions. This is especially important if the woman's membranes have ruptured, but labor has stalled out. After woman's due date, acupuncture may be used every other day in an effort to naturally induce labor.