Multiple studies have demonstrated the effectiveness of acupuncture used in conjunction with in vitro fertilization (IVF). Acupuncture can improve success rates of these interventions by increasing blood flow to the ovaries and uterus, and even improving the efficacy of the medications administered. Undergoing these procedures can be stressful, and acupuncture has been shown to lower stress levels and reduce anxiety. There are many studies in the leading reproductive journal Fertility and Sterility linking high stress to lower rates of success of assisted reproductive technologies. Our goal at Nurture is to assist you in this process so you can feel supported, reassured, and at ease. We work with patients closely during these cycles, in order to time treatments appropriately around the time of embryo transfer.
* LGBT- At Nurture we understand that there are unique challenges facing gay and lesbian couples who are trying to have a baby. In most cases, the individual, or couples, are not affected by medical infertility but must use IUIs, IVF or surrogacy to have the healthy baby they desire. We are here to support you in your journey and can help customize a treatment plan that fits your needs.
In Chinese medicine, the first goal when treating women with suboptimal fertility is to regulate the menstrual cycle, as the health of the monthly period is the strongest indicator of potential fertility. We help women with different types of menstrual irregularities, including amenorrhea (lack of period), dysmenorrhea (painful periods), mid-cycle bleeding, and infrequent menstruation. Many of the patients we treat have been diagnosed with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), and we have been very successful helping these patients return to a pattern of regular ovulation. Our goal with all of these conditions is to regulate the patient’s cycle, using acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine, as well as our other services.
Diminished Ovarian Reserve and High Follicle Stimulating Hormone
As women age, ovarian reserve (the capacity of the ovary to produce viable eggs) naturally decreases. Many times, this coincides with an increased production of FSH, which is a hormone that is released from the pituitary gland that stimulates the maturation of eggs. An elevated level of FSH along with other indicators, is associated with decreased fertility as the eggs become less receptive to FSH as they age. Many women with this Western medical diagnosis will be advised to use donor eggs. Many times, the underlying root of these problems, is years of stress, overworking, and lack of sleep. Nourishing the body and helping with the depletion that we typically see with these patients can be very helpful in their journey, whether they decide to use donor eggs, undergo IVF with their own eggs, or try to conceive naturally. We enjoy working with our patients and their reproductive endocrinologists to determine the best course of action.
We have had many patients come to us with a diagnosis of unexplained infertility. Sometimes these patients have been trying to conceive on their own for years, or have tried western medical interventions such as IUIs and IVF without success. We treat these patients as we do our other fertility patients by trying to regulate the menstrual cycle in order to improve the patient’s overall health and fertile potential. Many times, once we facilitate their journey back to health, conception occurs naturally. However, one key piece of our Eastern reproductive medicine certification is recognizing when it is appropriate or necessary to bring in Western medical treatment. We look at overall health, maternal age, and past medical history to come up with the most appropriate treatment plan for these patients.