Acupuncture Continuing Education

Reproductive Medicine and Acupuncture

A randomized placebo-controlled study of 309 women concludes that electro-acupuncture “significantly improved the clinical outcome of ET (embryo transfer).”1 IVF (in vitro fertilization) live birth rates jumped from 21.2 percent for women who did not use acupuncture to a 42 percent success rate for women who received acupuncture twice. The women received acupuncture 24 hours before the IVF procedure and 30 minutes after IVF. In another control group, women who only received acupuncture once, 30 minutes after IVF, had an increased success rate of 37.3 percent.

IVF is a treatment for infertility. This involves controlling a woman’s ovulatory process with medications, removing the ova (eggs) from the body, fertilizing the ova with sperm outside of the human body and then implanting the fertilized ova (zygote) into the uterus. Acupuncture for the treatment of infertility has received a great deal of press because singers Mariah Carey and Celine Dion used acupuncture with success. Mariah Carey used acupuncture to balance her body after a miscarriage in 2008. Carey said she did not use IVF but used acupuncture for stress relief and hormone therapy to boost her fertility. Celine Dion used acupuncture to achieve success with her 6th attempt at IVF. Both singers gave birth to healthy twins.

Fertility and Sterility. Volume 96, Issue 4, October 2011, Pages 912-916. Increase of success rate for women undergoing embryo transfer by transcutaneous electrical acupoint stimulation: a prospective randomized placebo-controlled study. Rong Zhang Ph.D., Xiao-Jun Feng B.S., Qun Guan B.S., Wei Cui M.S., Ying Zheng M.S., Wei Sun B.S., Ji-Sheng Han M.D.
Neuroscience Research Institute and Department of Neurobiology, Peking University Health Science Center, Key Laboratory of Neuroscience, The Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Public Health, Beijing, People's Republic of China.
Reproductive medical center, The second hospital affiliated to Shandong University of traditional Chinese medicine, Jinan, People's Republic of China.