Acupuncture and IVF

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. Epub 2006 Apr 5. Westergaard LG, Mao Q, Krogslund M, Sandrini S, Lenz S, Grinsted J. – Fertility Clinic Trianglen, Hellerup, Denmark. CONCLUSION(S): Acupuncture on the day of ET significantly improves the reproductive outcome of IVF/ICSI, compared with no acupuncture. Repeating acupuncture on ET day +2 provided no additional beneficial effect.
Published on April 5, 2006

Acupuncture performed around the time of embryo transfer: a systematic review and meta-analysis
Smith CA et al. 2019. Acupuncture performed around the time of embryo transfer: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Reprod Biomed Online. 2019 Mar;38(3):364-379. doi: 10.1016/j.rbmo.2018.12.038. Epub 2019 Jan 2. CONCLUSIONS: Acupuncture may be effective when compared to no adjunctive treatment with increasing clinical pregnancies and live births, but is not an efficacious treatment when compared with sham controls. ("Sham acupuncture is not an effective control, because anytime you put a needle in the body you affect a change", Stephanie Gianarelli)
Published on March 1, 2019

Changes in serum cortisol and prolactin associated with acupuncture during controlled ovarian hyperstimulation in women undergoing in vitro fertilization-embryo transfer treatment.
Magarelli PC, Cridennda DK, Cohen M., Fertil Steril. 2009 Dec;92(6):1870-9. doi: 10.1016/j.fertnstert.2008.10.067. Epub 2008 Dec 31. CONCLUSION(S): In this study, there appears to be a beneficial regulation of CORT and PRL in the Ac group during the medication phase of the IVF treatment with a trend toward more normal fertile cycle dynamics.
Published on December 31, 2008

Effects of acupuncture on rates of pregnancy and live birth among women undergoing in vitro fertilisation: systematic review and meta-analysis.
Manheimer E, Zhang G, Udoff L, Haramati A, Langenberg P, Berman BM, Bouter LM. BMJ. 2008 Mar 8;336(7643):545-9. doi: 10.1136/bmj.39471.430451.BE. Epub 2008 Feb 7. CONCLUSIONS: Current preliminary evidence suggests that acupuncture given with embryo transfer improves rates of pregnancy and live birth among women undergoing in vitro fertilisation.
Published on February 7, 2008

Impact of whole systems traditional Chinese medicine on in-vitro fertilization outcomes.
Hullender Rubin LE et al. 2015. Reproductive Biomedicine Online. 2015 Jun;30(6):602-12. Overall, IVF with adjuvant WS-TCM (whole-systems traditional Chinese medicine) was associated with greater odds of live birth in donor and non-donor cycles.
Published on June 30, 2015

Influence of acupuncture on the outcomes of in vitro fertilisation when embryo implantation has failed: a prospective randomised controlled clinical trial.
di Villahermosa DI, Dos Santos LG, Nogueira MB, Vilarino FL, Barbosa CP. Acupuncture in Medicine 2013 Jun;31(2):157-61. doi: 10.1136/acupmed-2012-010269. Epub 2013 Mar 19. Source: Faculty of Medicine of ABC, Clinic for Human Reproduction, Santo André, São Paulo, Brazil. RESULTS: The clinical pregnancy rate in the acupuncture group was significantly higher than that in the control and sham groups (35.7% vs 7.1% vs 10.7%; p=0.0169). CONCLUSIONS: In this study, acupuncture and moxibustion increased pregnancy rates when used as an adjuvant treatment in women undergoing IVF, when embryo implantation had failed.
Published on July 31, 2013

Influence of acupuncture on the pregnancy rate in patients who undergo assisted reproduction therapy.
Fertil Steril. 2002 Apr;77(4):721-4. Paulus WE, Zhang M, Strehler E, El-Danasouri I, Sterzik K. – Department of Reproductive Medicine, Christian-Lauritzen-Institut, Ulm, Germany. CONCLUSION(S): Acupuncture seems to be a useful tool for improving pregnancy rate after ART.
Published on April 1, 2002

Reduction of blood flow impedance in the uterine arteries of infertile women with electro-acupuncture.
Stener-Victorin E, Waldenström U, Andersson SA, Wikland M., Hum Reprod. 1996 Jun;11(6):1314-7. Source: Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Fertility Centre Scandinavia, University of Gothenburg, S-413 45 Gothenburg, Sweden. CONCLUSION: Compared to the mean baseline PI (pulsatility index), the mean PI was significantly reduced both shortly after the eighth EA treatment (P < 0.0001) and 10-14 days after the EA period (P < 0.0001).
Published on June 11, 1996

Use of acupuncture in female infertility and a summary of recent acupuncture studies related to embryo transfer.
Stener-Victorin E, Humaidan P., Acupunct Med. 2006 Dec;24(4):157-63. Source: Institute of Neuroscience and Physiolopgy, Sahlgrenska Academy, Göteborg University, Sweden. elisabet.stener-victorin@neuro.gu.se ABSTRACT: During the last five years the use of acupuncture in female infertility as an adjuvant to conventional treatment in assisted reproductive technology (ART) has increased in popularity. The present paper briefly discusses clinical and experimental data on the effect of acupuncture on uterine and ovarian blood flow, as an analgesic method during ART, and on endocrine and metabolic disturbances such as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). Further it gives a summary of recent studies evaluating the effect of acupuncture before and after embryo transfer on pregnancy outcome. Of the four published RCTs, three reveal significantly higher pregnancy rates in the acupuncture groups compared with the control groups. But the use of different study protocols makes it difficult to draw definitive conclusions. It seems, however, that acupuncture has a positive effect and no adverse effects on pregnancy outcome.
Published on December 24, 2006

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