IVF, ICSI, FET
Preparing for Fertility
Trying for a family in the context of a stressful and demanding work schedule can be challenging. The ‘Prepare for Fertility’ programme is intended to improve and optimise your natural fertility. It involves looking at how you can manage your busy life with the aim of focussing your energy more directly on your ultimate goal of having a family.
I can provide help and advice to counter the effect of day to day stresses and demands, as well as support and guidance for you in carrying through the programme.
Acupuncture treatment is used to support both men and women in preparing for conception. Specifically, we can do this by:
Promoting a balanced energy system that can support you in achieving conception.
In Chinese medicine your body is viewed as an integrated energy system. Subtle disruptions and anomalies in this system may not produce obvious symptoms and you may feel normal and well. However, these energetic problems may have an effect on your fertility. I can try to correct these disruptions and anomalies and, in this way,
help to promote fertility.
Reducing the effects of stress and helping relaxation.
There is now much evidence that stress and anxiety can adversely affect fertility in both men and women. I can use acupuncture to help to induce relaxation as well as reduce your susceptibility to anxiety and the depleting symptoms that accompany it, such as insomnia and tiredness.
Targeting specific health problems that might directly or indirectly interfere with conception.
You may have specific health problems which acupuncture can address. These may be impacting on your energy system as a whole, and therefore indirectly on your fertility. I will address these with acupuncture and herbal food supplements if
this is appropriate or, if these are not suitable, refer you to another practitioner.
Diet and exercise
Diet and exercise are important in Chinese medicine because we can use them to
support and enhance the therapeutic effects of treatment. They are significant and important aspects of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) in their own right. My advice in respect of this will
address your specific energetic problems.
As part of your initial assessment, I may recommend a preparation period during which I may suggest you avoid pregnancy. This may be as little as one month, but may be as much as six months. During this time, I will suggest you have weekly or bi-weekly acupuncture treatment.
If you have not already done so, some women patients may be asked to complete a temperature chart (BBT chart) in the first month, as this can be invaluable in helping to determine the correct acupuncture treatment for you.
IVF, ICSI, FET
Acupuncture has been shown in various studies to make a difference to the success of IVF/ICSI treatment. Using this knowledge, together with my experience of Chinese medicine, I have developed programmes to assist and support couples going through fertility treatment (IVF, ICSI, FET).
Acupuncture works in a number of ways, all of which can have the effect of improving qi and blood flow to the uterus. It can help to:
assist your ovaries and uterus to respond appropriately to the IVF medication;
clear specific pathogenic factors which may inhibit the success of your IVF/ICSI treatment;
help your qi system to function well and effectively support your reproductive system;
reduce anxiety, induce calm and relaxation so that treatment can be more effective and conception more likely;
help to reduce some of the side effects of the IVF treatment, especially side effects from the down-regulating medication.
The treatment programme is similar to, and builds on, the treatment regimes for regulating your menstrual cycle, enhancing ovulation and promoting implantation.