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Approximately 10% of women are sufferers of PCOS, a condition in which a woman's hormones are out of balance. Some of the symptoms are irregular menstrual bleedings, insulin imbalance, acne, facial and body hair (that are not typical for a woman). Approximately 50% of PCOS patients are considered obese. PCOS does not have just external implications such as weight gain, acne or excess hair, PCOS may have much more serious health consequences such as diabetes, hyperlipidemia and hypertension, and last but not the least infertility-related problems.

Problems that are related to issue of trying to conceive stem from several factors, and they include the fact that typically follicles don't mature and only develop to between 10 and 12 mm, while a mature follicle grows to approximately 20mm. The second reasons results from the fact that the eggs contained within the follicles are usually not of the best quality. This is often why, even when women with PCOS use medication and IUI or IVF to conceive there may be a greater rate of miscarriage than experienced by women in the general population. And the third reason is hormonal imbalance: the FSH, LH, Estrogen, Androgen and Progesterone levels are typically at either inappropriate levels or have inappropriate quantitative relationships between them.

So, what is the point of having an acupuncture treatment? Main goal of acupuncture is to improve hemodynamics or blood flow to the ovaries and uterine lining. This is a very important part of the process because blood carries hormones, electrolytes, oxygen and nutrients to target tissue and upon its return, takes debris or dead cells away from the target tissue. Acupuncture enables an increase in the patency of blood flow to any tissue (any time, not just during the period of preparing for pregnancy) and this means a healthier tissue and a better performing organ system.

A better performing organ system can only result in a positive thing, don t you think? From the stand point of TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine), PCOS represents a disease that is caused by what we call phlegm, which is described as a rather a sticky, viscous substance that is inert, still, clogging and blocking. Acupuncture will not wave its magic wand and make it go away this is not how it works. Acupuncture and herbal medicine cannot cure PCOS, but when they are properly combined, they both help to improve follicle quality and egg quality. This is why the East meets West approach to infertility makes sense.

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