Acupuncture Can Help Your Fertility – Depending on the reasons for difficult conception, treatments are usually given over a number of menstrual cycles to provide not only the best environment for conception, implantation and the growing foetus, but also for the mother’s energy and ongoing health, throughout pregnancy. Just as you may be advised to start taking vitamin and mineral supplements by your healthcare practitioner in the months leading up to attempted conception, balancing your body’s natural cycle and treating any disorders impacting fertility is also important during these prior months. Acupuncture treatment just prior to, and just after, possible conception and implantation is an essential part of the treatment protocol.
The Male Factor:
Given that approximately 50% of infertility involves male disorders, such as sperm abnormalities, acupuncture for the male partner is often recommended. Acupuncture and Chinese medicine have been shown to improve sperm count, morphology and motility. Even if your partner’s sperm analysis is within the normal range, acupuncture for the male just prior to woman’s ovulation and attempted conception is recommended to help boost sperm motility. As spermatogenesis (or the life cycle of sperm) takes around 60 days from division of the stem cell to mature sperm appearing in the semen, ongoing treatment for the male partner is encouraged in cases of abnormal sperm analysis.
Acupuncture and Chinese medicine, to enhance IVF success, involves ongoing weekly to fortnightly treatment, leading up to egg pick-up and embryo transfer. Depending on the various factors for difficult conception, prior treatment can often take place for a number of months before the IVF process begins, to provide the best environment for implantation and good health of the mother and growing foetus, during pregnancy.
Acupuncture in the week prior to egg pick-up is highly recommended, particularly just prior to, and after, the embryo transfer, as this assists successful implantation. Stress and anxiety has been found to be one of the main impending factors of conception, implantation and for fertility in general, and this becomes a major focus of acupuncture treatment at the egg pick-up and embryo-transfer stage.
For couples undergoing ICSI, the male partner is encouraged to come in for acupuncture 1-3 days prior to the procedure, to encourage sperm motility and other sperm factors.