Acupuncture, Naturopathy, Diet and Nutrition - Impact on Fertility


IVF twice as successful with acupuncture:

A study by Gillerman et al. at the London Homerton Hospital found that rates of IVF success were twice as high among those women having acupuncture. The study involved 160 couples suffering from fertility problems. Half were assigned to have four sessions of acupuncture during their IVF cycle. One year on, those who underwent the ancient practice, involving fine needles, had achieved pregnancy rates of 46.2 per cent. Among those who had not, pregnancy rates were just 21.7 per cent. (Report in the Telegraph; July 2016)

Cochrane Review

Assisted conception:  "There is evidence of benefit when acupuncture is performed on the day of embryo transfer (ET) on the live birth rate (OR 1.86, 95% CI 1.29 to 2.77) but not when it is performed two to three days after ET (OR 1.79, 95% CI 0.93 to 3.44). There is no evidence of benefit on pregnancy outcomes when acupuncture is performed around the time of oocyte retrieval."  [Cheong YC, Hung Yu Ng E, Ledger WL. Acupuncture and assisted conception. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2008, Issue 4. Art. No.: CD006920. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD006920.pub2]

Other Research

Male infertility:

A prospective randomized placebo-controlled study of the effect of acupuncture in infertile patients with severe oligoasthenozoospermia In this first prospective, randomized, single-blind, placebo-controlled study, 28 infertile patients with severe oligoasthenozoospermia received acupuncture according to the principles of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) and 29 infertile patients received placebo acupuncture. A significantly higher percentage of motile sperm (World Health Organization categories A–C), but no effect on sperm concentration, was found after acupuncturecompared with placebo acupuncture. Stefan Dieterle, Chunfang Li, Robert Greb, Felix Bartzsch, Wolfgang Hatzmann, Dongmei Huang. Fertil Steril 2009;92:1340–3. 2009 by American Society for Reproductive Medicine.

Acupuncture in clinical and experimental reproductive medicine:

Acupuncture seems to have beneficial effects on live birth rate when performed on the day of ET, and to be useful also in PCOS as well as in male idiopathic infertility, with very low incidence of side effects. However, further studies are necessary to confirm the clinical results and to expand our knowledge of the mechanisms involved. G. Franconi, L. Manni, L. Aloe, F. Mazzilli, G. Giambalvo Dal Ben, A. Lenzi and A. Fabbri. J. Endocrinol. Invest. 34: 307-311, 2011
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