Berkeley Fertility Acupuncture
Traditional Chinese medicine is a complete health system that has a long history of enhancing fertility. Practitioners of Chinese medicine view the body as an integrated whole, addressing imbalances to improve overall health, while strengthening the reproductive system to promote optimal fertility. Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) is a unified medical system that integrates well into Western medical treatment for clients who are using assisted reproductive technologies.
Each fertility client receives a detailed TCM pattern diagnosis which is used to formulate an individualized treatment plan. TCM pattern diagnosis involves analyzing individual signs and symptoms to determine the specific imbalances that may contribute to infertility. This pattern diagnosis also characterizes a person's overall health. This lays the foundation of the treatment plan which may include the following:
- Herbal Medicine
- Diet and Lifestyle counseling
- Nutritional Supplements
- Reproductive Massage
- Diagnostic Testing and Assessment
Traditional Chinese medicine can improve fertility by:
- Regulating the menstrual cycle to promote normal ovulation
- Harmonizing hormonal functions to balance the reproductive system
- Reduce the effects of stress on the body
- Regulate the hormones to improve ovarian function
- Stimulate circulation to the uterus, increasing the thickness of the endometrial lining
- Promote implantation by maximizing endometrial receptivity
- Stimulate circulation to the ovaries to boost their functions
- Promote overall health
Acupuncture and IVF
A growing body of research supports the positive effects that acupuncture has on the success rates of in vitro fertilization (IVF). Research published in the February 2008 issue of The British Medical Journal (BMJ), concluded that acupuncture given with the embryo transfer improves pregnancy and live birth rates of women undergoing IVF. Research findings published in the 2002 issue of Fertility and Sterility, Volume 77, also reported greater IVF success with acupuncture treatments before and after the transfer. The timing of acupuncture treatments with IVF transfers is an important factor when mapping out the treatment plan. Michelle works with David Stokke, MS, LAc, (www.DavidStokke.com), in her Fourth St. office. Their combined schedules allow them to be available for IVF transfer treatments seven days a week.
Advanced Maternal Age
Women over the age of 35 can influence their reproductive system to promote greater health and balance. There are many factors that can be addressed by acupuncture in the process. Taking better care for our bodies in general will help to promote overall good health and well being. Eating well, sleeping well, exercising, and reducing stress go a long way to help improve reproductive health. Many women find that changing negative thought patterns and finding spiritual balance also helps to reduce stress in their lives. Acupuncture can be used to address two specific areas that naturally decline with age. Blood flow to the ovaries naturally declines as we approach our 40s. Acupuncture has been clinically proven to increase ovarian function. Acupuncture can also influence hormone functions to encourage the ovaries to be more responsive to the natural rhythms that are required for the healthy ovulation.