Acupuncture for Fertility
- Acupuncture is a traditional Chinese medical treatment that relies on the painless, strategic placement of ultra thin needles to stimulate body areas believed to regulate spiritual, mental, emotional and physical balance.
- For centuries acupuncture has been used to treat some causes of infertility and help all stages of conception.
- There is no strong evidence in the reproductive research that acupuncture helps increase pregnancy rates for in vitro fertilization (IVF), but it may help with alleviating the stress associated with the process on the day of embryo transfer
- This service is available at LLU Center for Fertility.
- There are minimal risks in using acupuncture for fertility treatment when performed by a trained practitioner.
What is acupuncture?
Acupuncture is a traditional Chinese medical treatment that relies on the painless, strategic placement of ultra thin needles to stimulate body areas believed to regulate spiritual, mental, emotional and physical balance. Acupuncture affects various bodily functions and is non-toxic, natural and affordable.
There are more than 2,000 acupuncture points on the human body. It is believed that through acupuncture, stressed bodies will be brought closer to their original balanced state. Most patients who have undergone acupuncture note a reduction in stress and an increased ability to relax. Patients often fall asleep while undergoing treatment.
Benefits of acupuncture on fertility & pregnancy
For centuries, acupuncture has been utilized to treat certain causes of infertility and aid in gestational development during all stages of conception.
While acupuncture cannot replace advanced reproductive technology, studies suggest it may help:
- Regulate hormones by reducing stress
- Improve blood flow, which can help thicken the lining of the uterus
- Improve sperm count
- Relieve morning sickness and nausea during pregnancy
- Alleviate hip and back pain
- Help with postpartum pain and depression
- Promote positive thinking
In combination with regular IVF protocols, acupuncture is thought to increase blood flow to the uterus and reduce a woman’s stress levels prior to embryo transfer, which aids implantation. When used after a transfer, acupuncture may also alleviate discomfort and cramping.
Risks of acupuncture for fertility
There are minimal risks from acupuncture for fertility treatment when performed by a trained practitioner. Once pregnancy is achieved, acupuncture may actually alleviate some of the most common side effects of pregnancy such as morning sickness and back pain.
Expectant mothers with a high-risk pregnancy should speak to their doctor prior to using acupuncture.