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Thread: Acupunture increases IVF success rates (two studies)

  1. #91


    Jennifer M,

    I go to the acupuncturist in Maroubra - Acupuncture IVF - but I don't go the clinic. I go to SIVF. It must be easy for you to have both places close together. I was recommended the acupuncturist by a friend of a friend who has been successful. Congrats on number of follies.

  2. #92

    Join Date
    Aug 2008


    I am not sure what to do. I just got back from my Acupuncturist - first appointment since last week's m/c (I've been seeing her almost weekly for 6 months). And she made me feel like cr*p. She really made me feel like it was my fault for not being patient and waiting - LIKE SHE TOLD ME - for my body to be ready - she said that my body can't hold a baby right now and that she is finding it hard to work with me because I insist on trying to get pregnant (given my age, I really have no choice). This really is not what I needed. I'm really torn because I think she is good at AP but at this point, I don't think she's good for my head - I was wavering between crying, getting up and walking out and just grin & bear (or is it bare) it. But I also think that I've had decent implantation success because of her - and she is also down the street from my office - a major plus when fitting this in. If anyone knows of a good (experienced with IVF), kind hearted AP that is convenient to the CBD in Melb please PM - it's very unlikely that I can go somewhere that is not close to work. She's also been very flexible with the pre-embryo retrieval and transfer - coming in when she's not scheduled to be working etc. I don't know what to do.

  3. #93


    Wow. Thats unbeleivable. How dare she? Acu is meant to help your state of mind not hinder it. I am so sorry you had this experience - especially from someone you have been working with and trusting. I would ditch her. Acu itself works a treat but not if the practicioner is judging you like that.

    I am in Sydney so I am not much help but I really hope you find someone who is convenient, effective and above all KIND. I am sure the ladies on this board will be able to help you.

    My heart goes out to you. As if your journey isn't hard enough already


    PS If it is any consolation, my Acupuncturuist (also a midwife - very fertility friendly) says that as long as the treatment is within 24 hours on either side of the transfer then its fine. The western studies show it to be within two hours (or whatever it was) but TCM has a longer term effect than that. I think in all my five FET attempts with Acu I only ever had it on the day of transfer once - and it wasn't the successful one either. I think I was 48 hours later with that one!

    PPS You should also let her know why you are "sacking" her so she doesn't do this to someone else.

  4. #94

    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Brisbane Australia


    Oh Hun that is tough babe but I do belive AP played a big part in our success. If this is a one off hang in there maybe she was having an off day

    the MC is not your fault in anyway it is just bubs way of saying I am not ready yet

    Google spirit babies it really really helped me

  5. #95


    Hi Buliej,

    I feel for you that she wasn't as tactful as she could have been at a vulnerable time for you, if you are getting results however, and your relationship is otherwise therapeutic, I would suggest staying with her and doing what she says. I'm happy to expound the relevent theory of Chinese Medicine with you in order to understand her angle (Come to BBPC or pm me if you want this). I'm sure her heart is in the right place. Good luck with your decision. I hope this is helpful for you.

  6. #96


    Poor Buliej

    I feel very upset on your behalf - I find that attitude just unbelievable. You can be pretty sure that she has not trodden this path we are all on - or she would understand that you just cant wait and wait when the clock is ticking .........

    I am having such success with my clinic (the practitioners there are all specialists in IVF acupuncture, and so understanding) AND its REALLY helped me - eight eggs collected yesterday. Thats more than twice the number I have EVER achieved before. So whether its blood flow or whatever, I am a convert!! Its quite a precise protocol they follow ......... now I have one more treatment between now and transfer (fingers crossed!) and then a treatment immediately before ET and one immediately after, then one more a week later .......... then fingers crossed so HARD again.

    SO Buliej, I called my acupuncture clinic and asked about Melbourne and she told me the people who run my clinic and the one near SIVF are going to open a clinic with a melbourne ivf clinic so try to find mary jo bevan who is the acupuncturist who will be clinical director.

    All the best and hang in there .........

  7. #97


    Thanks Turner

    the best news - 8 eggs collected yesterday. thats the best EVER for me - more than double my usual count. SO I'm definitely sold on teh acupuncture - whether its blood flow or stress hormones or whatever! Its a really precise protocol they follow isnt it? I have one more treatment between now and ET, then one immediately before ET and one immediately after and then one a week later. I'm so hopeful and so scared.


  8. #98


    Jennifer M,

    That is so exciting. And the number of eggs - woohoo! I read these boards - I'm new to bellybelly, but was really involved with a US based board - and I see the egg counts and just think... if only! I've never gotten more than 4 and the most to fertilise was 2. So I'm hoping for better success this cycle. It is so good to read of other people's success, it does give me energy to keep on going.

    Good luck to you.

  9. #99


    Hang in there Turner - if things can look up for me they can for you too!!
    I'll be cheering for you.

  10. #100


    Hi JM

    havent heard from you for a bit - just wondered how you are? did the acupuncture help? I'm having another series of acupuncture now in preparation for a frostie transfer .......... feeling good, feeling positive! Hope you are too.

    all the best

  11. #101


    Hi Laura May

    nice to hear from you again ....... I have been a bit quiet; we went away for a few days- that 2WW is so tough.
    Thanks for asking - the acupuncture really did help, but my test was -ve on Friday. I moped a lot this weekend, you know what its like!! But now I'm feeling positive again because you know it was my best cycle yet - incredibly different to my previous ones. Not only more eggs, but 6 embryos ....... and 3 in the freezer. THis is first for me. I am feeling so positive that one of those frosties will be the one - I have fingers crossed on yours too

  12. #102


    Jennifer M,

    That's fantastic. I'm starting my cycle this week. Since we go to the same acupuncture clinic, I wonder if we're in the waiting room at the same time!! Those girls are amazing - I'm feeling really positive going into this cycle. Feel very centred and wake up not feeling exhausted and morose. When is 2ww up? Fingers are crossed for you.

    BTW - did you bruise at all with your acupuncture? I didn't this time round and I don't know if it is the practitioner and the way they are doing it or something else?

    Good luck?


  13. #103


    Turner, we must have had the urge to post at exactly the same moment ....... how about that for synchronicity - so I wouldnt be surprised if we were at the maroubra clinic same time! Though so far I have been taken straight in which is great when its ET day and the acupuncture is done immediately before and after the transfer next door. And it wasnt a positive this time, but I'm sure it will be with a frostie cos this cycle was just so different to all the others Ive done. I just thank God for those docs in Colorado who started this amazing program of integrated acupuncture and IVF. And I bless dear doc sacks who told me to go next door and do this acup programme. No bruises with acup, but quite a few with injections! ho hum, guess we gotta put up with that. Let me know how you are going - and if you are going to the clinic this week! See ya JM

  14. #104

    Join Date
    Apr 2009



    I was just wondering if anyone knew of any good fertility acupuncturists in Perth that they could recommend, ideally around Joondalup? I am currently having daily puregon injections and thought it might be worth a try.

  15. #105


    Hey JM, thanks for your prayers ........ prayers back your way too.
    Fab to hear that the acupuncture did so well.
    Are you in Sydney - do you go to ivf A?
    Let me know when you are going to do another transfer.

    ps Turner I get mild bruising sometimes too, it goes away quickly though and ive found very soft massage often helps!

    all the best ladies!


  16. #106



    I don't know anyone in Perth. I'm in Sydney and go to AcupunctureIVF in Maroubra. However, they do use a certain protocol. Jennifer M goes to the same clinic and she seems to have read up more about it than me. Perhaps you could find someone in Perth that uses the same approach. The clinic I go to seems to be having success.

    All the best with your cycle.


  17. Default

    Hi Licks68,

    try this link [url=]Australian Acupuncture & Chinese Medicine Association - Practitioner Search[/url] all the best!

  18. #108

    Default Info regarding studies and the success of acupuncture.

    Hi All, am attaching below an article I found about acupuncture. Unfortunately the chart that went with it seems to have dropped off when i copied and pasted it.

    It makes me feel hopeful!

    "Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and Fertility

    TCM has had extraordinary results in treating infertility and there continues to be ongoing medical research to support this.
    Many modern researchers have confirmed its benefit in the following areas:
    ? Invigorating sperm- enhancing a man's sperm count and motility.
    ? Improves the function of the ovaries to produce better quality eggs.
    ? Regulates the menstrual cycle (and its hormones) to produce a larger number of follicles
    ? Increases blood flow to the uterus and increase the thickness of the uterine lining
    ? Relaxes the patient and reduces stress
    ? Enhances general health
    ? Prevents the uterus from contracting (and therefore provides a better environment for the embryo to implant)
    ? Decreases risk of miscarriage
    ? Decreases risk of ectopic pregnancy
    ? Increasing the chance of pregnancy for women undergoing in-vitro fertilization (IVF).
    ? Improves live birth rate
    How does TCM help infertility?
    The main focus of TCM with regards to fertility treatment is to regulate the menstrual cycle and correct any imbalances in the body. Through the use of acupuncture and Chinese herbs, the practitioner aims to achieve a 28 day cycle with minimal or no menstrual cramping during the period and no breast tenderness or emotional imbalances before the period. According to TCM, these problems associated with the menstrual cycle along with other signs and symptoms including fatigue, digestive complaints, insomnia, headaches and weight fluctuations are all associated with various organ imbalances. Acupuncture stimulates the flow of intrinsic energy in the body, enhances the blood circulation to the pelvic region and benefits vital organ function. Chinese herbal formulas work in conjunction with the acupuncture treatments to tonify any deficiencies and harmonise any imbalances. In addition, proper exercise, correct diet and a healthy life style all promote the flow of specific meridians and remove existing inner psychological frustration restoring your reproductive health, which helps you not only to conceive, but also to deliver a healthy, full term baby.
    What is the procedure of the treatment?
    The initial phase of treatment involves regulating the menstrual cycle. The therapist follows the cycle aiming to treat with acupuncture during the menstrual phase, post menstrual phase and ovulation. Between acupuncture treatments your individualised Chinese herbal prescription will continue to follow your natural cycle while correcting any imbalances or deficiencies.
    During the menstrual phase focus of the treatment is to encourage a complete discharge of menstrual blood so that a new endometrium can grow evenly on a smooth and even uterine surface. Herbs and acupuncture can assist with the movement of blood during this phase of the cycle. Encouraging this process may also be of benefit for period pain associated with blood stagnation.
    Post menstrual treatment is focused on encouraging the growth of an egg and thickening of the uterine lining. This is done by nourishing the blood and body fluids. With regular acupuncture and Chinese herbs during this phase there will be an increase in the quality and quantity of fertile mucus at ovulation.
    Treatment during ovulation encourages movement of Qi (pronounced ?chee?) and blood in the ovaries to encourage smooth passage of the egg down the fallopian tube. At this stage in the cycle the Chinese herbal formula also focuses on moving Qi and blood during the middle of the cycle.
    Post ovulation the treatment focus in on warming the uterus. This creates a nourishing environment for implantation of a fertilized egg into a thick healthy uterine lining. Acupuncture can be used to regulate the energy and blood flow in the uterus. It is also an important time to incorporate stress relieving techniques such as massage and meditation to calm the mind.
    Once conception occurs, second phase treatment increases the probability of a full term pregnancy and decreases the possibility of miscarriage.
    Who will be appropriate candidates for acupuncture and herbal medicine?
    Women with unexplained infertility or hormonal imbalances, such as menstrual irregularities, PMS, high FSH level, difficult implantation, and frequent miscarriage, would be encouraged to seek relief from Acupuncture and Chinese medicine. The most frequent cause of unexplained infertility or hormonal imbalance is energy stagnation, which affects blood flow in the pelvic area. Many years of emotional stress, depression, frustration, overwork, and improper diet and lifestyle often play a major role in energy congestion.
    Infertility due to hormonal problems, immune disorders, amenorrhoea, irregular menstruation, stress and age related factors are also excellent candidates for TCM.
    Acupuncture and in-vitro fertilization
    TCM can help to improve the success rate of IVF in a number of ways:
    ? Improve the function of the ovaries to produce better quality eggs
    ? Regulate the hormones to produce a larger number of follicles
    ? Increase blood flow to the uterus and increase thickness of the uterine lining
    ? Relax the patient and decrease their stress
    ? Prevent the uterus from contracting
    ? Lessen the side effects of drugs used in IVF
    ? Improve semen to create better quality and quantity of embryos
    ? Decrease chances of miscarriage
    A German study, published in the April, 2002 edition of the medical journal Fertility and Sterility, found that acupuncture increases the chances of becoming pregnant for a significant number of women undergoing in-vitro fertilization (IVF).
    Researchers included 160 patients undergoing IVF for the study. The patients, who were all required to have good quality embryos, were evenly and randomly divided into two groups similar in age and diagnosis.
    When the patients were examined using ultrasound six weeks after their IVF procedures, the differences in pregnancy rates were notable. In the control group, 26 percent of the women, or 21 out of 80 patients, became pregnant. Of the patients who had received acupuncture treatments, 42 percent of the women, 34 out of 80, became pregnant.
    The theory is that acupuncture can affect the autonomic nervous system, which is involved in the control of muscles and glands, and could therefore make the lining of the uterus more receptive to receiving an embryo.
    In October 2004 another study from USA emerged, with impressive results. In this research they not only measured the pregnancy rates of IVF, but also other aspects.

    Just two treatments of acupuncture before and after IVF not only considerably increased the success rates, but also substantially increased live birth rates. Furthermore, it substantially reduced risk of miscarriage and ectopic pregnancies.
    What changes do I expect during IVF?
    Your FSH levels may be normalised, and the uterine lining increased in thickness. Since acupuncture enhances the circulation of blood and energy throughout the body, you will have more energy; better sleep patterns and emotional balance. It is not uncommon for patients to feel more in control and experience a greater sense of peace. Pregnancy becomes easier to achieve and postpartum recuperation happens faster. It is great integration of Ancient and Western medicine.

    How many acupuncture treatments do I need during the IVF procedure?
    Ideally we recommend patients begin acupuncture treatment three months prior to the IVF procedure. This gives the body plenty of time to harmonise any imbalances in the organs and strengthen deficiencies. During this time there will be improvement in ovarian function leading to production of higher quality ovum.
    In the case where couples are already undergoing IVF, acupuncture can be of benefit during the period of follicle stimulation, and before and after the embryo transfer.
    During these times acupuncture can not only support the IVF process by enhancing blood flow to the uterus but it also helps reduce stress and the side effects of the drugs.
    Once the embryo has been fertilized and implanted in the uterus acupuncture can significantly reduce the rate of miscarriage. At this stage treatment is aimed at assisting blood circulation in the uterus, maintaining implantation of the embryo and nourishing the growth of the embryo. Treatment may also be of benefit to relax the uterus and calm the mind."

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