Chinese Medicine & Acupuncture for Infertility

From the point of view of Chinese medicine and acupuncture, kidney energy plays a very important role in a patient's ability to conceive, low libido, poor quality sperm or inability to release eggs can all be attributed to a deficiency of kidney energy. If the kidney energy is healthy, a patient should be able to conceive naturally, unless other medical conditions are present. In my practice, I have treated many unexplained female infertility cases using Chinese medicine/acupuncture. My personal opinion and experience on female unexplained infertility is that the environment inside the womb/uterus is unhealthy, due to poor blood and energy flow or a thin uterine lining.

Over two decades, my method called "Break the blood stasis and tonify the kidney energy to treat infertility" has produced good results.

Blood stasis/stagnation is commonly seen in gynaecological problems. Blood stagnation can result in blood stasis. Blood clots is a sign of severe blood stasis. I have found that it is more effective to clear blood stasis before the kidney energy is tonified.

Taking care of other organs is also important during infertility treatment. Factors such as stagnation of liver energy, deficiency of spleen and blood must be considered too.

However, I believe that the most common factor causing infertility and miscarriage is an unhealthy environment inside the womb. This is why IUI or IVF are not guaranteed to work. The fertilised egg does not bed inside the uterus (IVF failure), or the embryo ceases to develop (miscarriage). For a healthy plant to grow, the soil has to have water, fertiliser and warmth or the plant will eventually die.

There are many factors which can cause poor blood and energy flow in the uterus. The most common factor is excessive coldness in/around the womb. I do not recommend wearing Crop-Tops, having cold showers/baths during menstruation, taking too many cold drinks, or eating cold foods. It is very wise not to have intercourse during menstruation. I also think taking too many contraception pills can cause poor blood and energy flow in the uterus.

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Does acupuncture help to increase IVF success rate?

Acupuncture helps to increase the blood and energy flow in the uterus and therefore improves the environment and thus the chances of conceiving naturally or through IUI/IVF are much higher and those of miscarriage much lower. Current research from Germany indicates that the combination of acupuncture with IVF is effective.

What can be done if the infertility is caused by endometriosis?

Endometriosis is an obvious indication of an unhealthy uterine environment. About 10% of my infertility patients have or have had this condition. I often employ Chinese herbal medicine to treat this.

Can you treat polycystic ovary syndrome?

Yes. Almost all polycystic ovary cases in my practice have been among my infertility patients. I'm pleased to say that I have achieved very good results in treating this condition.

Can blocked fallopian tubes be treated by acupuncture or Chinese medicine?

Chinese medicine believes that blocked fallopian tubes are caused by the afore-mentioned blood stasis. I often use Chinese medicine such as Tao Ren, Hong Hua, Chuan Xiong, Dang Gui, Cheng Shao, Shun Di, also some Qi tonic to "break" the blood stasis and thus free the tubes.

How far in advance of IVF treatment should acupuncture be started?

I normally recommend 6-10 weeks before commencement of IVF procedure.

Can Chinese medicine or acupuncture help to increase sperm count, quality and mobility?

Yes, in my experience. I prefer to use kidney and liver tonics, such as horny goat leaves and dangui to improve sperm count, quality and mobility, although acupuncture can also be used.