Acupuncture & IVF: Increase IVF Success by 40-60%
Increase your success rate with in vitro fertilization (IVF) by as much as 60%. Over a period of three years, acupuncture was offered to patients entering assisted reproduction therapy. Acupuncture sessions were given at varying, but usually weekly, intervals during the in vitro fertilisation (IVF) cycle, and immediately before and after embryo transfer. The success rate of 57.7% compared with 45.3% for patients in the IVF unit not treated with acupuncture.
The calming and anti-anxiety effects of acupuncture are likely to be of real importance. Stress and anxiety are seen as significant factors in failure to achieve pregnancy. Acupuncture is well known to have a relaxing effect, and during this study several patients who had experienced previous IVF cycles commented on how much more relaxed they were in the acupuncture-supported cycle. They also claimed to have experienced fewer side effects from the drugs. The relaxation was confirmed by the gynaecologist performing the embryo transfer as applying generally to patients in the acupuncture group.
There is evidence that acupuncture increases blood flow to the ovarian and uterine arteries, thus thickening theendometrium and making it more receptive to the transferred embryo. This appears to be a response to a reduction in sympathetic nervous tone induced by the acupuncture.
1. Johnson, D., 2006, Acupuncture prior to and at embryo transfer in an assisted conception unit – a case series, ACUPUNCTURE IN MEDICINE 2006;24(l):23-28. www.medical-acupuncture.co.uk/aimintro.htm
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