Acupuncture and Chinese Herbal Medicine

Providing Acupuncture in Bellevue and Monroe Washington

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Acupuncture can help get you pregnant!


Acupuncture for Infertility, IUI / IVF Acupuncture, and Male Factor Infertility - Bellevue, WA


Acupuncture can increase your chances of success. Whether you are trying to conceive naturally or are undergoing an IVF or IUI cycle, acupuncture and Chinese medicine has been helping people with infertility for hundreds of years.

 

 

Benefits of Infertility Acupuncture

Just recently, many clinical trials have been able to confirm that acupuncture helps to treat infertility. The trials demonstrated a significant increase in pregnancy rates with the use of acupuncture. Acupuncture has been shown not only to enhance pregnancy rates   but was also found to improve semen quality (specifically morphology and motility) as well. Since the health and vitality of a developing embryo takes both healthy eggs and healthy sperm, acupuncture is a great adjunct to add to help you achieve optimal reproductive health.

For Her:
• Improve ovarian function to produce higher quality eggs
• Regulate hormonal balance to produce a larger amount of follicles
• Increase uterine blood flow and thicken uterine lining
• Reduce medication side effects
• Prevent uterine contractions post IVF embryo transfer
• Decreasing chance of miscarriage
• Supporting health and balance during pregnancy
• Help with stress and relaxation

For Him:
• Improve sperm count, morphology, and motility
• Reduce sperm DNA fragmentation
• Help with stress and relaxation
• Treat pain or other urological health concerns
• Support health and balance

 


 

 

Frequently Asked Questions about Infertility Acupuncture

How long will I need treatment for fertility issues?
The typical acupuncture protocol consists of 10 - 15 sessions given over a three-month period of time. Herbal medicine is taken daily for at least three months. Other factors such as age, health, medical history or if you have had previous fertility treatments may determine a shorter or longer treatment time.

What acupuncture schedule do you recommend specifically for IVF or IUI?

We work with many local Ob/Gyn offices and fertility clinics. We will coordinate care depending on your treatment schedule with your physician's office. For specific timing please see below in our treatment schedule section. If you are coming for general preconception acupuncture, we will see you weekly for one complete menstrual cycle and then determine the best timing for acupuncture support.

What types of acupuncture do you offer for male factor infertility?

We have all different treatment options for men. Sometimes we just see them for one visit only on the day of their donation or just before their partner's ovulation. Other times if there is a complicating factor such as significant morphology or motility issues we recommend treatment once a week for 1-2 months.

Why do you recommend a minimum of 3-months for treatment?

A woman's eggs are recruited at least 100 days before they are ovulated. This means that the quality of your eggs in any given cycle is determined during the 3-6 months before that cycle. Three months allows us to have adequate time for your treatments and healthier life style habits to take affect and to provide the best environment for the eggs and sperm.

Does acupuncture treat "unexplained infertility"?

Yes! From the Chinese medicine way of analyzing and evaluating the body there is usually an imbalance that can be addressed and help toward the goal of conceiving even when there is no western medicine explanation. 

What else can I do?
There are many great ways to optimize fertility and enhance your overall health. We will go over additional risk factors, diet and lifestyle changes, mind-body techniques, acupuncture and herbal formulas for balancing hormones and boosting your health and well being. You can also go to our Resources page for other local specialists and information on infertility.

 

 


 

Treatment Schedule

There are different acupuncture treatment options and support plans to designed to help you. Below is a list of possible options and suggested timing for each. After your initial visit we will discuss what we feel would be the most successful plan to achieve your reproductive goals.

  • Preconception Treatment Program
  • Acupuncture on the day of embryo transfer
  • Acupuncture before and during the medication phase of IVF
  • Acupuncture three days after egg collection if going to blastocyst (day five) embryo transfer
  • Acupuncture for frozen embryo transfer (FET) including donor eggs
  • Acupuncture for IUI Support
  • Early Pregnancy Acupuncture

Preconception Acupuncture for Reproductive Health

Goal: Treatment to increase your health and wellness before you conceive.  Chinese medicine effectively treats a wide variety of women's health issues to optimize your fertility. If you are just starting on your fertility path or have gone through several failed IVF cycles, Chinese medicine can offer a wonderful way to enhance your reproductive health as you try again. Or if you have tried several methods and have decided you need a new pathway, acupuncture and Chinese medicine can offer you another option for treatment.
Schedule: Treatments are determined by your menstrual cycle or for specific support times during menstrual cycle phases. (for example some women need extra support at ovulation) Ideally treatment plan should be for weekly acupuncture for 3 months for optimum fertility support.
Cost: $125-$155 for first visit, $75 for each follow-up

 

Acupuncture for IUI / IVF

Day of Embryo Transfer Acupuncture

Goal: Treatment schedule follows clinical trials that demonstrated acupuncture improves blood flow to uterus and ovaries and hormone regulation, may affect follicle development and implantation. Higher pregnancy rates (as much as 65%!) were seen in these trials combining acupuncture with IVF.
Schedule: 1 treatment immediately before embryo transfer and one treatment up to 24 hours post embryo transfer.
Cost: $75 for each treatment, 2 treatments

IVF Acupuncture before and during the medication phase of IVF

Goal: To manage any side effects, decrease anxiety and stress while reducing fatigue and discomfort. Treatment schedule used that follows clinical trials to improve blood flow to uterus and ovaries and hormone regulation to affect follicle development and implantation. Higher pregnancy rates were seen in these trials.
Schedule: Optimal treatment time is 2 treatments per week for the 4 weeks before embryo transfer and a pre and post embryo transfer treatment.
Cost: $155 for initial appointment, $75 for each follow-up

Acupuncture three days after egg collection if going to blastocyst (day five) embryo transfer

Goal: To help to speed healing and reduce any inflammation or bleeding and to increase uterine receptivity for transfer day.   
Schedule: Acupuncture treatment within 48 hours after egg retrieval
Cost: $75 for 1 treatment

Acupuncture for frozen embryo transfer (FET) including donor eggs

Goal: Similar treatment to medication phase of IVF, by increasing blood flow to uterus and ovaries and hormone regulation to assist in implantation.
Schedule: 2 treatments per week for 2-4 weeks before transfer, plus pre and post transfer treatments. 
Cost: $75 for 1 treatment

Acupuncture for IUI Support

Goal: Regulate hormones, assist in ovulation, improve uterine blood flow to enhance uterine lining and assist in implantation.
Schedule: Weekly acupuncture until day of IUI, the pre and post IUI treatment.
Cost: $125-$155 for first visit, $75 for each follow-up

Early Pregnancy Acupuncture Weeks 1-12
 (First Trimester Acupuncture)
Goal: To reduce the chance of miscarriage and assist in successful implantation by enhancing circulation to the uterine lining.
Schedule: Weekly treatments from ovulation to week 12 of pregnancy.
Cost: $125-$155 for first visit, $75 for each follow-up


Text Box: If you have been unsuccessful with previous IUI or IVF cycles, please contact us and come in for a fertility specific consultation. Find out how to optimize your reproductive health before your next IUI/IVF cycle. We will come up with a strategic health plan to help you achieve your goals.  Schedule an appointment     

 

    Male Factor Infertility Acupuncture

Acupuncture Treatment Plans for Men

Our suggested treatments for men are based on both historical acupuncture and recent clinical trials showing the improvement in sperm parameters with acupuncture. Acupuncture treatments have been shown to increase sperm motility and count, and decrease abnormal forms. Acupuncture has all been shown to help with other reproductive health issues such as erectile dysfunction, prostate concerns, libido, and pain or urinary problems.

Men's Fertility Acupuncture

Goal: To increase sperm motility and decrease abnormal morphology, protocol based on successful clinical trials showing positive improvements in semen analysis post-acupuncture..
Schedule: Weekly treatments from ovulation to week 12 of pregnancy.
Cost: $125-$155 for first visit, $75 for each follow-up

Acupuncture for poor sperm morphology and motility.
Goal: To increase sperm motility and decrease abnormal morphology. Protocol based on
successful trials showing improved semen analysis after acupuncture.
Schedule: Weekly treatments of acupuncture and herbs.
Cost: $125-$155 for first visit, $75 for each follow-up

Acupuncture for IVF / ICSI Prep
Goal: To reduce the chance of miscarriage and assist in successful implantation by enhancing circulation to the uterine lining.
Schedule: 2 weekly treatments for 6 weeks prior to IVF schedule
Cost: $125-$155 for first visit, $75 for each follow-up

Acupuncture on day of sperm donation (IVF or IUI)
Goal: To reduce stress and anxiety, while increasing pelvic blood flow.
Schedule: 1 treatment before donation.
Cost: $75 for each follow-up

Fee Schedule

  • Acupuncture initial treatment session $155
  • Acupuncture treatment per follow-up session $85
  • Embryo transfer treatment $150, 2 sessions (within 48 hours of transfer)
  • To find out if your medical health insurance company covers acupuncture treatment for infertility, please email or call us for the INSURANCE COVERAGE VERIFICATION FORM.
  • The diagnosis code for infertility is 628.9.
  • For those clients who do not have Acupuncture coverage for fertility please ask us about our pre-paid discount treatment packages.

          Infertility Acupuncture Research
Below is a listing of clinical and laboratory research on Acupuncture and reproductive health. There are more studies being conducted on this exciting new avenue of research. The studies below have all appeared in the journal Fertility and Sterility. Ten of them found that acupuncture performed close to the time of embryo transfer improved chances of pregnancy. Three reported no effect, and one found a negative effect (which was put down to the fact that the patients had to drive across town after their embryo transfer to reach the acupuncture clinic).

 

Acupuncture and Infertility

Reduction of blood flow impedance in the uterine arteries of infertile women with electro-acupuncture.
Stener-Victorin E, et al Hum Reprod 1996; 11:1314-1317.
Human Reproduction 
Acupuncture and IVF: State of the ART of Integrative Research

Ovarian blood flow responses to electro-acupuncture stimulation at different frequencies and intensities in anaesthetized rats
Stener-Victorin E et al Autonomic Neuroscience Volume 108, Issues 1-2, 31 October 2003, Pages 50-5
Autonomic Neuroscience

A Pilot Study Evaluating the Combination of Acupuncture with Sildenafil on Endometrial Thickness
Yu W et.al.Presented at the Pacific Coast Reproductive Society Annual Conference 2007

Acupuncture & IVF Poor Responders: A Cure?
Magarelli P, Cridennda D. Fertil Steril, 2004;81(Supplement 3):S20
Fertility and Sterility

A randomized, controlled, double blind, cross-over study evaluating acupuncture as an adjunct to IVF. Quintero R et al, Fertil Steril, 2004;81(Supplement 3):S11-12 Fertility and Sterility

Changes in serum cortisol and prolactin associated with acupuncture during controlled ovarian hyperstimulation in women undergoing in vitro fertilization–embryo transfer treatment
Magarelli, PC, D Cridennda, M Cohen. Fertil Steril 2009 in press
Fertility and Sterility

 

Semen changes with Acupuncture

Effect of acupuncture on sperm parameters of males suffering from subfertility related to low sperm quality.
Siterman S et al Arch Androl. 1997 Sep-Oct;39(2):155-61
Archives of Andrology

Quantitative evaluation of spermatozoa ultrastructure after acupuncture treatment for idiopathic male infertility.
Pei J et al Fertil Steril. 2005 Jul;84(1):141-7
Fertility and Sterility
Effects of acupuncture and moxa treatment in patients with semen abnormalities.
Gurfinkel E et al Asian J Androl. 2003 Dec;5(4):345-8.
Asian Journal of Andrology

Does acupuncture treatment affect sperm density in males with very low sperm count? A pilot study.
Siterman S et al Andrologia. 2000 Jan;32(1):31-9.
Andrologia

A prospective randomized placebo-controlled study of the effect of acupuncture in infertile patients with severe oligoasthenozoospermia
Dieterle et al Fertil Steril 2009 Oct; 92 (4): 1340–3
Fertility and Sterility

Influence of acupuncture on idiopathic male infertility in assisted reproductive technology.
Zhang M et al J Huazhong Univ Sci Tech Med Sci.2002;22(3):228-30
Journal of Huazhong University ( Abstract in Chinese)

 

Emotional Well being and Acupuncture for IVF patients

Building resilience: A preliminary exploration of women's perceptions of the use of acupuncture as an adjunct to In Vitro Fertilisation
De Lacey S, Smith C and Paterson C, BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine 2009, 9:50
BioMed Central

Understanding Women's views towards the use of Acupuncture while undergoing IVF treatment.
Smith C and De Lacey S, 2008 In press
FSA conference 2008

The Impact of Acupuncture on in Vitro Fertilization Outcome.
Domar A et al Fertility Sterility 2009 Vol 91 Issue 3 pg 723 - 6
Fertility and Sterility

 

Other

Effects of acupuncture on rates of pregnancy and live birth among women undergoing in vitro fertilisation: systematic review and meta-analysis.
Manheimer E et al. BMJ 2008;336 pg 545-549
British Medical Journal 

Acupuncture and Assisted Conception
Cheong Y et al, Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews Nov 2008, Issue 4.
Cochrane Review

A Systematic Review and Meta -analysis of the effect of Acupuncture on Outcome of in Vitro Fertilisation Treatment
El-Toukhy T et al BJOG 2008 115 (10); 1203 -13
British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecolgy

Traditional Chinese medicine and infertility.
Huang, S T and Chen, A P C, Current Opinion in Obstetrics & Gynecology. 2008, 2(3):211-215.
Current Opinion in Obstetrics & Gynecology

 

The Role of Acupuncture in the Management of Subfertility
Ng E H et al Fertil Steril. 2008 Jul;90(1):1-13.
Fertility and Sterility
Another review of the literature from a group in Hong Kong concludes that the positive effect of acupuncture in the treatment of subfertility may be related to the central sympathetic inhibition by the endorphin system, the change in uterine blood flow and motility, and stress reduction.


 

 

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© 2009 Kaira Jorgensen, L.Ac.

Source Healing and Wellness Center
12737 Bel-Red Road, Ste 210
Bellevue, WA 98005
(425) 533-7320