Electro-Acupuncture Improves Birth Rate for In Vitro Fertilization

April 03, 2012

Electro-Acupuncture Improves Birth Rate for IVF

Vol 15 Issue 66

Acupuncture is well established as treatment for infertility. According to a new study reported in the journal Fertility and Sterility, it also works to help women who undergo in vitro fertilization to achieve successful childbirth.

The study, involved 309 women who were undergoing in vitro fertilization. The women were divided into three groups.

The first group received electro-acupuncture, and the second received sham electro-acupuncture. Both were treated at the time their embryos were implanted.

The third group also received electro-acupuncture when the embryos were implanted, but they also received an additional electro-acupuncture treatment on the day prior to implantation.

The results for those who received real electro-acupuncture were significantly better than for those who received the sham version. Group one, who received real electro-acupuncture at the time of implantation had a 37 percent success rate – meaning they had a baby, or babies, not just that they got pregnant – compared to the group who had sham electro-acupuncture, where the success rate was 21 percent.

Group three, who received the additional treatment the day before, had the best results at 42 percent.

Earlier studies have shown that both acupuncture and electro-acupuncture can increase a woman’s chances of getting pregnant through IVF, but none of them have followed through to see how many of those women actually carried the baby full-term and delivered.

Researchers are not certain how electro-acupuncture helps women who get IVF, but they believe it might be related to improvement in uterine blood flow. They also said it may somehow affect how receptive the uterine lining is to the implanted embryos.

Whatever the reason for the success, the study results offer new hope for women who cannot otherwise have a baby.

Source: MSNBC, http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/44688760/ns/health-alternative_medicine/t/electro-acupuncture-boosts-ivf-success-study/