****Article 1

The Ancient Art of Infertility Treatment

When it comes to getting pregnant, old world techniques may be just what today’s high-tech doctors will order.

By Colette Bouchez

If headlines are any indication of what’s hot and what’s not, it’s easy to believe that infertility treatment is strictly a modern day science, made possible solely
through the courtesy of high-tech medicine.

But as good as modern science is, many couples trying to get pregnant find themselves turning to an age-old treatment for help — one so steeped in tradition it’s
about as far from life in the 21st century as one can get.

That treatment is acupuncture, and today, even high-tech reproductive specialists are looking to the somewhat mysterious world of Chinese medicine to help those
fertility patients for whom western science alone is not quite enough.

“Most of our patients are referred to us by reproductive medicine specialists — they are usually women who have failed one or usually more than one attempt at IVF (in
vitro fertilization), and their doctor is looking for something to help implement the success of their treatment, over and above what the protocols alone can
accomplish,” says Raymond Chang, MD, the medical director of Meridian Medical and a classically trained acupuncturist as well as western-trained medical doctor.

Acupuncture is an ancient Chinese medicine treatment that relies on the painless but strategic placement of tiny needles into a “grid-like” pattern that spans the
body, from head to toe. The needles are used to stimulate certain key “energy points” believed to regulate spiritual, mental, emotional, and physical balance. And, for
many women, it’s often just what the doctor ordered.

“It can allow you to cross the line from infertile to fertile by helping your body function more efficiently, which in turn allows other, more modern reproductive
treatments, like IVF, to also work more efficiently,” says James Dillard, MD, assistant clinical professor, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, and
clinical adviser to Columbia’s Rosenthal Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine.

Indeed, in a study of 160 women, published April 2002 in the reproductive journal Fertility and Sterility, a group of German researchers found that adding acupuncture
to the traditional IVF treatment protocols substantially increased pregnancy success.

In this study one group of 80 patients received two, 25-minute acupuncture treatments — one prior to having fertilized embryos transferred into their uterus, and one
directly afterwards. The second group of 80, who also underwent embryo transfer, received no acupuncture treatments.

The result: While women in both groups got pregnant, the rate was significantly higher in the acupuncture group — 34 pregnancies, compared with 21 in the women who
received IVF alone.

But increasing the odds of IVF is not the only way acupuncture can help. Chang says it can also work to stimulate egg production in women who can’t — or don’t want to
— use fertility medications to help them get pregnant.

“When you compare the pregnancy rates for an egg producing drug such as Clomid to acupuncture alone, the rates are equal — a 50% chance of pregnancy in three months
for general patients — to those not undergoing IVF,” says Chang.

Unfortunately, however, Chang says that because acupuncture generally stimulates the growth and release of just one egg, it can’t be substituted for fertility drugs
used in IVF, since they work to produce the multiple eggs necessary to achieve success with this treatment

How Acupuncture Works
Although acupuncture is fast becoming an accepted fertility protocol, not everyone agrees on how — or why — it works.

According to the traditional Chinese medicine explanation, acupuncture stimulates and moves Qi (pronounced “Chee”) a form of life energy that ancient wisdom says must
flow through the body unhampered from head to toe, 24/7. When it doesn’t, illness or malfunctions such as infertility arise.

“Acupuncture works to restore the flow of Qi — your essence, your body energy — so with regards to infertility, treatment has a calming, restorative effect that
increases a sense of well- being and ultimately helps the body to accept the creation of life,” says acupuncturist Ifeoma Okoronkwo, MD, a professor of medicine at New
York University School of Medicine.

By placing the needles at key energy meridians linked to the reproductive organs, Okoronkwo tells WebMD acupuncture increases, and more importantly, moves the flow of
Qi from areas where it may be too abundant, to areas that are deficient, all in a direction that encourages fertility.

To get your fertility Qi up to snuff, most experts say you will need about two, 30 minute treatments a week, sometimes for several months, before the effects can be

However, a slightly more Western way of looking at the effects points less to the mystical Qi and more towards the solid science of brain chemistry.

In studies published in the journal Fertility and Sterility in 2002, Chang, along with noted Cornell University reproductive endocrinologist Zev Rosenwaks, MD, found a
clear link between treatment and the brain hormones involved in conception.

More specifically their research noted that acupuncture increases production of endorphins, the body’s natural “feel good” brain chemical that also plays a role in
regulating the menstrual cycle.

Chang says acupuncture also appears to have a neuroendocrine effect, impacting a three-way axis between the two areas of the brain involved with hormone production
(the hypothalamus and the pituitary glands) and the ovaries, a constellation that ultimately impacts egg production and possibly ovulation.

In still another research paper published in the journal Medical Acupuncture in 2000, Sandra Emmons, MD, assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Oregon
Health Sciences University, reports that acupuncture may directly impact the number of egg follicles available for fertilization in women undergoing IVF.

“My guess is that acupuncture is changing the blood supply to the ovaries, possibly dilating the arteries and increasing blood flow, so that ultimately, the ovaries
are receiving greater amounts of hormonal stimulation,” says Emmons, who also uses acupuncture in her traditional medical practice.

Chang says acupuncture may also help when the lining of the uterus is too weak to sustain a pregnancy — a problem that is also known to increase the risk of chronic

By increasing blood flow to this area, the lining may be better able to absorb the nutrients and hormones necessary to help it grow strong enough to hold onto an
implanted embryo, says Chang.

Can Acupuncture Help You? How to Tell
As good as it sounds, acupuncture is clearly not the panacea for all fertility problems. As Dillard tells WebMD, in instances where a structural defect exists — such
as a blocked fallopian tube or a fibroid tumor — acupuncture won’t help you get pregnant.

Likewise, once past a certain age, no amount of tickling your Qi is going to increase necessary hormones that have long gone out of production.

For this reason, many doctors recommend that you have at least a basic fertility workup before attempting acupuncture treatment, particularly if you are approaching,
or you are over, the age of 40.

“If it turns out you have structural problem that requires a traditional medical ‘fix’, then the sooner you find that out and get the proper treatment, the more likely
it will be that you can get pregnant,” says Dillard.

At the same time Chang tells WebMD that younger women — those in their early to mid-30s — might want to consider acupuncture first, before investing in expensive and
invasive fertility treatments.

“Sometimes a few months of acupuncture will be enough to help you get pregnant on your own,” he says.

If, in fact, you do seek acupuncture treatment be aware that not all protocols are equal.

“There is tremendous variability within the field — with many different techniques and a great deal of the success dependant upon how much the acupuncturist knows
about the treatment of infertility,” says Okoronkwo.

Costs can also vary dramatically, ranging from several hundred dollars to $1,000 or more, depending on how long you are treated, and who is doing the treatment. And
while many insurance companies cover the cost of acupuncture treatments, some don’t when treatment involves infertility, so check your policy carefully.

With that said, to help you hone in on the expert that can rock your Qi in the direction of motherhood, our experts offer the following tips:

Look for a doctor that is adequately trained and licensed in acupuncture, as well as has a background in treating infertility. An MD or DC who simply practices
acupuncture once in a while often has just several hundred hours experience, compared to several thousand hours of training and practice required for a traditional
Chinese doctor.

If you are undergoing fertility treatments with a reproductive endocrinologist, make certain that your doctor has a working relationship with your acupuncturist, and
that they work in harmony to establish a treatment regimen.
If you are not seeing a fertility specialist, do pay at least one visit to an obstetrician before seeking the help of an acupuncturist — and make sure your
obstetrician is aware of your acupuncture treatment plan.

Although acupuncture often works in harmony with Chinese herbal medicine, if you are undergoing IVF or any traditional fertility treatment, don’t take any herbs
without the OK of your reproductive medicine specialist.

If you are undergoing an IVF protocol and acupuncture simultaneously, once you reach the implantation stage it’s imperative to get a pregnancy test before proceeding
with more acupuncture treatments. If you are trying to get pregnant on your own it is equally important to have your pregnancy verified by an obstetrician as soon as
possible. Some of the same points used to stimulate the uterus and increase fertility may also cause a miscarriage — so your acupuncturist needs to know if you are,
or could be pregnant.

(This article is from the WebMD News Archive


By Colette Bouchez-WebMD)

*****Article 2

How can Oriental Medicine enhance fertility for me and my partner?

Oriental Medicine (OM) has long been known to treat both female and male infertility. Infertility seems to be on the rise in women and men of all ages, although it is exacerbated by the fact that many of today’s couples delay child-bearing. Infertility affects about one in six couples.

OM teaches that fertility is a woman’s natural state between the onset of her menstruation and menopause. Problems with fertility in both men and women result from imbalances within the organ systems, hormones, and energy networks or acupuncture meridians.

How can Oriental Medicine and Acupuncture address my partner’s and my infertility problems?

Oriental medicine offers a natural, non-invasive approach to treating infertility by focusing on enhancing the quality of eggs, sperm, endometrial lining and cervical fluid. Sometimes this approach is sufficient for couples to conceive on their own and it offers a valuable adjunct for couples who are about to undergo the expense and physical demands of IVF. Acupuncture can also support patients during in vitro fertilization using your own eggs or those of a donor, artificial insemination, and gonadotropin assisted cycles. Studies have shown that acupuncture increases the success rate of ART and helps to alleviate side-effects (Paulus et al, 2001, Magarelli et al, 2009). The largest meta-analysis on acupuncture and IVF to date, involving 24 randomized clinical trials (RCTs) and 5,547 completed embryo transfers, found that acupuncture significantly improves both clinical pregnancy rates and live birth rates (Zheng et al, 2012). Acupuncture is a low-cost, noninvasive, safe treatment, and has virtually no side effects. Many fertility clinics recommend that patients have acupuncture in order to enhance their Western medical procedures. 

Western Science

After one year of unprotected intercourse without having achieved pregnancy a couple is considered infertile. If a medical cause for infertility is discovered, various treatment options can be considered, including Oriental medicine. 10% of American couples suffer from infertility. Among infertile couples, about 40% are due to female infertility, 40% are due to male infertility, 10% have both female and male factor involvement, and about 10% have unexplained causes.

While the causes are unknown, these couples are still encouraged to try treatment. Western medicine offers them tools with assisted reproductive technology (ART). Couples with unexplained infertility often find acupuncture and Oriental medicine to be a non-invasive, inexpensive way to offer a new perspective on their fertility process.

Female factors include ovulation disorders, fallopian tube obstruction and scarring, uterine and cervical disorders, endometriosis, immunological factors, polycystic ovaries, (premature) ovarian failure, and poor egg quality.

Male factors include low sperm count, abnormal sperm morphology, poor motility, varicocele, immunological factors, sperm fragmentation, and ejaculation disorders.

Western Medical Treatment Options

Ovulation induction through gonadotropin injections, artificial insemination (IUI) with or without the use of gonadotropins, In-Vitro Fertilization (IVF), Gamete Intrafallopian Transfer (GIFT), Zygote Intrafallopian Transfer (ZIFT), Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI), Epididymal and testicular sperm extraction, freezing of sperm and embryos, donor eggs, sperm or embryos, surrogate parenting, embryo adoption. Acupuncture has been a recent addition to many ART clinic programs in Europe and the United States.  

How does the science interpret Oriental Medicine’s effects on fertility?

Many scientific studies have examined how acupuncture affects the body. Researchers have found evidence that acupuncture points are conductors of electromagnetic impulses. Stimulating these points along their pathways via acupuncture enables the release of endorphins and stimulates immune system cells to specific sites. It activates opioids within the central nervous system, which is associated with pain reduction. Acupuncture has been shown to alter brain activity, body sensations and autonomic nervous system functions. Acupuncture impacts autonomic nervous system functions such as immune reactions, blood pressure, blood flow, and body temperature regulation. It regulates brain chemistry by changing the release of neurotransmitters and neuro-hormones in a beneficial way. Studies show promising data that acupuncture affects the menstrual cycle by altering neuroendocrine effects on the body. This means that different combinations of acupuncture points may play a role in the release of the hormones responsible for regulating a woman’s menstrual cycle and enhancing a couple’s fertility. (Pomeranz et al, 2001)

How does stress affect fertility?

Research has shown that acupuncture treatments reduce stress, a common occurrence for couples dealing with infertility. Stress alters the subtle but important balance between the hypothalamus, pituitary and reproductive organs. This is why stress, among other factors, may cause irregular menstruation and/or premenstrual syndrome. A stressed woman is generally tense, and as a result may suffer more from spasms in the fallopian tubes and the uterus, which may disrupt implantation. Stress is also associated with more anxiety and depression, which would negatively affect fertility. Acupuncture releases endorphins, thereby counteracting the negative effects of stress. Many patients find their acupuncture sessions to be a very relaxing experience that induces an almost trance-like state, which is most likely due to the release of endorphins. Many patients even fall asleep during treatments (Chang et al, 2002).

Low-Cost, High-Quality Pregnancy & Ovulation Tests

Good quality early pregnancy tests and ovulation tests can be found at http://www.early-pregnancy-tests.com/.


Basal body temperature thermometers are also available.

Can Acupuncture, diet and Chinese herbs help build a woman’s endometrial lining?

Acupuncture has been shown to increase blood flow to the reproductive organs. A nutrient-dense diet that builds good quality blood and optimal hormonal balance provides the ovaries and uterus with the best raw materials to grow a healthy baby. The Chinese pharmacopeia offers many blood tonics that enrich the endometrial lining. Increased blood flow improves follicle and egg health and promotes the lining of the uterus to create a hospitable environment for an embryo to implant and grow. This holds true whether the woman is undergoing gonadotropin therapy or is attempting to conceive naturally (Stener-Victorin, 1998).

How does Oriental Medicine address high FSH levels?

Women who have elevated FSH levels will benefit from regulating their cycles through acupuncture and Chinese herbal therapy, which increase blood flow to the reproductive organs and balance within the endocrine system. FSH levels can fluctuate; having one FSH test result is only a snapshot of that hormone during a very narrow window of time, but it does give some information on general ovarian responsiveness. Acupuncture and Chinese herbal therapy—two tools that have been used for over a thousand years to enhance fertility—can be helpful for women who have had a high FSH reading and want to improve the state of their eggs and ovaries. Treatment is often successful, and allows the woman to conceive naturally or with the help of Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART). 

How does acupuncture benefit conception?

Strengthening the immune system plays a very important role in conception. Acupuncture helps to adjust the amount of white blood cells, T-cells and antibodies in the body thereby regulating the body’s immune system. This is relevant when there are immunological reasons for infertility, failed implantation problems, or repeated miscarriages. Inflammation, so common in the general population, can also have an effect on the reproductive system; this is particular seen in those women who may have food sensitivities (Soni 2010). Women with endometriosis typically present with some type of systemic inflammation as well as circulatory problems. Acupuncture also fosters receptivity by opening the energy pathways, or meridians. There are many benefits to using acupuncture, herbal therapy, targeted diets, and nutritional supplements to effectively curb the inflammatory response, and enhance implantation (Gerhard 1992; Emmons et al, 2001).
Photo © Fang Cai

How can Oriental Medicine help with recurrent miscarriages?

Women who suffer from recurrent miscarriages either have an imbalanced immune system, or undernourished reproductive system. Soni et al, for example, looked at celiac disease and its potential of altering fertility due to its immunological impact (Soni et al, 2010). A thorough health history and analysis will determine how this issue should be addressed. Often, women benefit greatly from eating a nutrient-dense diet, supplementing with omega-3 fatty acids and taking Chinese herbs for a short time to nourish the reproductive organs. Additionally, acupuncture treatments can assist pregnant women in preventing a miscarriage.

I was diagnosed with PCOS. What can you offer?

An estimated 10% of childbearing women have Polycystic Ovarian Disease (PCOS).  PCOS is a disorder that typically presents with obesity, hirsutism (unusual hair growth in the face, chest, back, etc), and acne. An ultrasound may reveal many unripe fluid-filled sacs around the ovaries. Many women suffer from anovulation and subsequent amenorrhea (no periods); and others have regular or irregular cycles. Many women have high levels of male hormones, also known as androgens. In women with PCOS, the ovaries do not produce all the hormones they need for follicles to fully mature. The follicles start to grow, but merely become cysts rather than fully-developed eggs. Because mature eggs secrete progesterone, progesterone is not produced in PCOS patients. Instead, the cysts may produce male hormones, which in turn prevent ovulation. Some of these women are prone to type-II diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, patches of thickened skin and dark brown or black skin on the neck, arms, breasts, or thighs (acanthosis nigricans).

The cause for PCOS seems to point to insulin-resistance in which estradiol is converted into testosterone, causing the follicles to not fully mature during the usually estrogen-rich follicular phase. Therefore, maintaining a healthy diet that is devoid of sugar, starches and simple carbohydrates may be very important. Both acupuncture and herbal medicine can help to regulate insulin levels and balance the endocrine system (Stener-Victorin 2000).

Can Acupuncture enhance the outcome of Assisted Reproductive Therapy? (ART) 

Couples who have healthy sperm, eggs, and good quality endometrial lining typically have better outcomes when using ART. Many traditional cultures encouraged couples who were ready to conceive to eat sacred, nutrient-dense diets for about six months prior to trying to conceive. Oriental medicine also advocates the use of special fertility diets for couples who are attempting natural conception or use ART. Acupuncture improves ART success rates by improving egg quality, nourishing the uterine environment, and balancing the woman’s endocrine system, thereby increasing clinical pregnancy rates and live birth rates (Paulus et al, 2001; Chang et al, 2002; Westergaard et al, 2006; Smith et al, 2006; Magarelli et al, 2009, Zheng et al, 2012).

What about the side-effects of ART?

Acupuncture helps reduce the side effects some women experience from the medications and the stress of the IVF experience. Treatments help women to feel less anxious, more relaxed, and empowered. Acupunctures helps treat abdominal bloating, mood swings, hot flashes, insomnia, and headaches that women may experience during the ART cycle.

How can Oriental Medicine help sperm count, morphology and motility?

In men, infertility may be due to physiological or life-style problems. Male sperm counts in the U.S. have diminished by 50% since 1945 (Sinclair 2000). This may be due to dietary changes, xeno-estrogens (estrogen-like components in pesticides and herbicides in the environment), heavy metals and other environmental factors. An estimated 10% of men are infertile, and the male partner is a factor in up to 50% of infertile couples. In many cases, the exact cause of male infertility is unknown. Several studies indicate that acupuncture treatments significantly improve total functional sperm, the percentage of sperm viability, and the total motile spermatozoa per ejaculate. These results were obtained by taking sperm samples from the men before and after one to three months of acupuncture treatment (Siterman et al, 2000; Fischl et al, 1984).

Pei et al, found that acupuncture improved sperm production and motility (a measure of forward movement of sperm). Sperm samples were analyzed at the beginning and end of the study and showed significant improvements in sperm quality in the acupuncture group compared with the other group. Acupuncture treatment showed fewer structural defects in the sperm and an increase in the number of normal sperm in ejaculate. But other sperm abnormalities, such as immature sperm or sperm death, remained unchanged by acupuncture. The researchers state that acupuncture treatment is a simple, noninvasive method that can improve sperm quality (Pei et al, 2005).

What happens during a session?

During the initial visit we discuss your medical history, fertility related issues, menstrual history, and perform a physical examination. The physical examination consists of checking your pulse on your wrists, looking at the tongue and performing diagnostic palpations, which involves the pressing of specific reflex zones both on the abdomen, neck, hands, and feet. The palpation will offer further insights into the exact nature of the condition. The resulting treatment plan may consist of treatments at individual intervals using acupuncture, custom tailored herbal medicine, daily basal body temperature charting according to the Fertility Awareness Method (Ehling/Singer, 2001), dietary assessment and stress reduction techniques.

How many sessions are usually necessary?

Although it is not a requirement, it is ideal to begin therapy at least three months prior to ART, or have treatment for a minimum of three months if trying to conceive naturally. Sperm development takes approximately 90 days from start to finish; dormant egg cells take a comparable amount of time to mature. Also, it may take a few months for a woman to build up sufficient endometrial nutrients and balance her hormones. Therefore, it is best to carry out any necessary treatments, and make necessary dietary and lifestyle adjustments during this crucial three month window.

During this time, you and your partner may receive acupuncture treatments, make dietary adjustments, take fertility-enhancing Chinese herbs and nutritional supplements, or do a combination of these therapies. We recommend giving yourself a minimum of three moths to have the therapies take their desired effect, although we have helped many patients conceive during that time frame.

The practitioners at AAHOM have decades of experience. We are always happy to work with you and your doctor in a way that best fits your needs.


1. Pomeranz B. Acupuncture Analgesia-Basic Research, Stux G, Hammershlag R (eds), Clinical Acupuncture: Scientific Basis, Berlin:Springer-Verlag, 2001. pp. 1-29

2. Stener-Victorin E. Reduction of blood flow impedance in the uterine arteries of infertility women with electro-acupuncture. Human Reproduction, Vol.11, No.6, 1996.—This study looked at women who had previously been diagnosed with a thin endometrial lining as a possible cause of fertility. The treatment group was given acupuncture for one month leading up to their IVF cycle and the uterine artery blood flow increased significantly within this time frame. This led to thicker endometrial lining in the treatment group versus the non-treatment group.

3. Gerhard I. Gynecol Endocrinol. 1992;6(3):171-181. Infertility: Similar results to hormonal treatment but with fewer side effects.

4. Emmons SL, Patton P. Acupuncture Treatment for infertile women undergoing intracytoplasmic sperm injection. Medical Acupuncture, A Journal for Physicians by Physicians, 2001 Vol. 12, No.2. – This study describes the use of acupuncture to stimulate follicle development in women undergoing in vitro fertilization. The case series included 6 women receiving intracytoplasmic sperm injection and acupuncture along with agents for ovarian stimulation.  The results revealed no pregnancies occurred in the non-acupuncture cycles. Three women produced more follicles with acupuncture treatment (mean, 11.3 vs 3.9 prior to acupuncture; P=.005). All 3 women conceived, but only 1 pregnancy lasted past the 1st trimester. Acupuncture may be a useful adjunct to gonadotropin therapy to produce follicles in women undergoing in vitro fertilization. This study examined whether acupuncture stimulated follicle development in women undergoing IVF. The patients in the study had previously exhibited poor follicle development despite the use of gonadotropins. Acupuncture was used twice a week for 4 weeks leading up to egg retrieval the results showed that the non-treatment group had an average amount of 3.7 follicles whereas the acupuncture treatment group had an average of 8.4 follicles.

5. Stener-Victorin E. Acta Obstet Gynecol Scand. 2000;79(3):180-8. Anovulation in PCOS: Electro-acupuncture appears to be useful to help stimulate ovulation in women with PCOS.

6. Chang R, et al. Role of acupuncture in the treatment of female infertility. Fertility and Sterility, Dec 2002;78(6):—Literature review of existing scientific rationale and clinical data for acupuncture for female infertility. Findings included positive effects on the central nervous system, influences on gonatropin secretion, and effects on uterine blood flow which affects endometrial thickness and morphology all of which are relevant for implantation. Acupuncture showed also significant improvements on stress related to infertility.

7. Paulus W, et al. Influence of acupuncture on the pregnancy rate in patients who undergo assisted reproduction therapy. Fertility and Sterility, April 2002;77(4):721-4.—This study found that in a group of 160 women 80 who were treated with acupuncture before and after the embryo transfer phase of IVF had a 42.5% pregnancy rate vs. a 26.3% pregnancy rate in the non-treatment group.

8. Zheng CH et al. Effects of acupuncture on pregnancy rates in women undergoing in vitro fertilization: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Fertility and Sterility, 2012 [Epub] – This is a meta-analysis of 24 randomized clinical trials for acupuncture and IVF, involving 5,807 participants. Clinical pregnancy rates and live birth rates were significantly higher in acupuncture groups as compared to sham or control groups. 

9. Westergaard LG, Mao Q, Krogslun M, Sandrini S, Lenz S, Grinsted J. Acupuncture on the day of embryo transfer significantly improves the reproductive outcome in infertile women: a prospective, randomized trial. Fertil Steril, 2006 May;85(5):1341-6. – This study was a repeat of the Paulus study above showing 39% higher rates of pregnancy in the acupuncture treatment group.

10. Smith C, Coyle M, Norman RJ. Influence of acupuncture stimulation on pregnancy rates for women undergoing embryo transfer. Fertil Steril, 2006 May;85(5):1352-8. —In this single-blinded, randomized controlled trial using an acupuncture treatment group and a sham acupuncture group, the pregnancy rate was 31% in the acupuncture group vs. 23% in the control group. The ongoing pregnancy rate was higher in the treatment group: 28% vs. 18%. 

11. Magarelli PC, Cridennda DK, Cohen M. Changes in serum cortisol and prolactin associated with acupuncture during controlled ovarian hyperstimulation in women undergoing in vitro fertilization-embryo transfer treatment. Fertil Steril 2009 Dec;92(6):1870-9.

12. Sinclair S. Male Infertility: Nutritional and environmental considerations. Altern Med Rev. 2000 Feb;5(1):28-38.

13. Siterman S, Eltes F, Wolfson V, Lederman H, Bartoov B. Does Acupuncture treatment affect sperm density in males with very low sperm counts? A pilot study. Andrologia. 2000, Jan;32(1):31-9. The treatment group showed a significant improvement in sperm counts when compared to the control group which did not receive treatment.

14. Fischl F, Riegler R, Bieglmayer C, Nasr F, Neumark J. Modification of semen quality by acupuncture in subfertile males. Geburtshilfe Frauenheilkunde, 1984 Aug;4498):510-2. – This study also looked at sperm counts and overall motility and morphology and found that the acupuncture treatment group showed significant higher counts when compared to the non-treatment group.

15. Pei J, Strehler E, Noss U, et al. Quantitative evaluation of spermatozoa ultrastructure after acupuncture treatment for idiopathic male infertility. Fertility and Sterility July 2005;84(1):141-7.

16. Ehling D, Singer K. Gauging a Woman’s Health by her Fertility Signals: Integrating Western with Traditional Chinese Medical Observations. Altern Ther Health Med. 1999;5(6):70-83. An analysis of using Fertility Awareness Method in conjunction with Oriental Medicine. Full article onwww.orientalhealthsolutions.com/resources

17. Soni S, Badawy SZ. Celiac disease and its effect on human reproduction: a Review: J Reprod Med. 2010 Jan-Feb;55(1-2):3-8

Other studies of interest:

Tanaka T; Mizuno K; Umesaki N; Ogita S.  A preliminary immunopharmacological study of an antiendometriotic herbal medicine, Keishi-bukuryo-gan.  Osaka City Med J, 44(1):117-24 1998 Jun

Jeng H; Wu CM; Su SJ; Chang WC.  A substance isolated from Cornus officinalis enhances the motility of human sperm.  Am J Chin Med 1997;25(3-4):301-6.

Mo X; Li D; Pu Y; Xi G; Fu Z.  Clinical studies on the mechanism for acupuncture stimulation of ovulation.

Zeisler H, Eppel W, Husslein P, Bernaschek G, Deutinger J.  Influence of acupuncture on Doppler ultrasound in pregnant women.  BJOG:  An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology 109:12, 1419-1419.

Yoshimoto, Yasuhiro, M.D., Miyake, Akira, M.D., Tasaka, Keliichi, M.D., Aono, Toshihiro, M.D.  Ovulation following combined therapy with wen-jing-tang and clomiphene citrate therapy in anovulatory women.  American Journal of Chinese Medicine, Vol XVII Nos. 3-4, pp. 243-244, 1989.

Ying, Chen Bo, M.D., Jin, Yu, M.D.  Relationship between blood radioimmunoreactive beta-endorphin and hand skin temp during the electro-acu induction of ovulation.  Acupuncture & Electro-Therapeutics Res., Vol. 16, pp. 1-5, 1991.

Xuefen, Cai.  Substitution of acupuncture for HCG in ovulation induction.  Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine 17 (2):119-121, 1997.
Chen, Bo-Ying, M.D.  Acupuncture normalizes dysfunction of hypothalamic-pituitary-ovarian axis.  Acupuncture & Electro-Therapeutics Res., Int. J., Vol. 22, pp. 97-108, 1997.

Male Factor:

Gurfinkel, Edson, Cedenho, Agnaldo P, Yamamura, Ysao, Srougi, Miguel.  Effects of acupuncture and moxa treatment in patients with semen abnormalities.  Asian J Androl 2003 Dec;5:345-348.

Ishikawa H; Ohashi M; Hayakawa K; Kaneko S; Hata M.  Effects of guizhi-fuling-wan on male infertility with varicocele.  Am J Chin Med, 24(3-4):327-31 1966.

Yue GP; Chen Q.  Male infertility treated by bushen shengjing pill in clinical observation and evaluation on its curative effect.  Chung Kuo Chung His I Chieh Ho Tsa Chih, 16(8):463-6 1996 Aug.

Lai AN; Song JF; Liu XJ.  An experimental study on inhibitory effect of Chinese medicine tai-bao on antisperm antibody.  Chung Kuo Chung His I Chieh Ho Tsa Chih, 17(6):360-2 1997 Jun.

Yamanaka M; Kitamura M; Kishikawa H; Tsuboniwa N; Koga M; Nishimura K; Tsujimura A; Takahara S; Matsumiya K; Okuyama A.  Direct effects of Chinese herbal medicine “hachuekkito” on sperm movement.  Nippon Hinyokika Gakkaie Zasshi, 89(7):641-6 1998 Jul.

*this webpage was authored by Dagmar Ehling, L.Ac. and changed a little for use by this clinic.



John McGimsey and Li Jie McGimsey
1168 S. Kings Drive
Charlotte, NC 28207
Charlotte Office:704-737-4412
Davidson Office:704-737-4412
Morganton Office:828-413-0567