Acupuncture is the medicinal technique coming from the traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). TCM says that there is the energy flow in the body, called qi (or chi) which is the vital force of the body. If the energy flow gets imbalanced, our body will suffer from a certain illness or disorder. The energy flows through the 14 Meridians (lines or channels) on the body, and by treating them with the thin needles one will improve the chi flow and also alleviate all problems it has caused.
The acupuncturist practitioner will insert these very thin needles into the certain spots of the body on the Meridians or near the proper meridians and amend the flow of the energy.
Acupuncture is considered to be generally harmless and without many side effects. It has proven to lower the stress, promote relaxation and raise the level of the “happy, feeling-good” hormone (endorphins).
Treating Fertility with Acupuncture
In TCM infertility is also thought to be caused by the impairment of the energy flow and therefore there are people using acupuncture to solve this problem. Since so many people are talking about the acupuncture, many think that there are real proofs that acupuncture works, but this is not the case.
Think again – if the acupuncture works, why there are no more doctors recommending it to the patients? The reason is simple – because there are no such scientific studies and conclusive information about the benefits of acupuncture. There are no medical experts that will suggest the use of uncertain methods to their patients, especially in such specific condition as the infertility treatment. Not a single doctor wants to disappoint people or give them false hope.
Most performed studies included small groups of patients and therefore are not medically (and scientifically) valid. Also, there were never studies that followed the rules of double blind, randomized trials, which is necessary to prove or reject some medications and medical techniques.
Some claim that the relaxation and stress relief acupuncture brings might be enough to use it, but there are other, much less expensive options to relax. Basic relaxation, meditation or yoga will have the same result for just a part of the cost of acupuncture.
However, no matter how non-scientific, there were some studies about the use of acupuncture in infertility treatment. In most cases, they have inconclusive results, but there were women who got pregnant using the acupuncture along the IVF and IUI conventional fertility treatments.
According to these researches acupuncture might increase the number of follicles and blood flow to the uterus, regulate the hormones and irregular cycles in the body and help solve thyroid problems (that might also cause infertility). In men, acupuncture could enhance the counts and quality of the sperm.