Valentin Tureanu, MD, NCMP
Reproductive Endocrinologist & Certified Menopause Practitioner located in Chicago, IL & Downers Grove, IL
IVF acupuncture has emerged as an important tool for use during egg retrieval (OPU) and before and after embryo transfer (ET), helping women manage discomfort and improve their chances of a successful procedure. A top-ranked reproductive endocrinologist in Chicago and Downers Grove, Illinois, Dr. Valentin Tureanu is skilled in the use of advanced IVF acupuncture techniques, providing patients with the widest array of care and treatment options for their needs and preferences. To learn more about IVF acupuncture and whether it’s a good choice for you, call the office, or use our online system to request an office visit today.
IVF Acupuncture Q & A
What is acupuncture?
Acupuncture is a centuries-old treatment technique that relies on very thin needles placed in specific locations on the body to help relieve pain and to treat some types of acute and chronic medical conditions. Widely used in traditional Chinese and Eastern medicine, in the past decade, the use of acupuncture has become quite popular as a complement to Western medicine as well.
How does acupuncture “work”?
Researchers aren’t sure how acupuncture actually works to relieve or prevent pain or to manage other medical conditions, but they believe the needles may disrupt pain signaling pathways to diminish pain sensations in the brain. Traditional Chinese medicine holds that the needles help realign the body’s natural energy or chi (sometimes spelled “qi”) to promote wellness and prevent or treat disease. Acupuncture is one of the fastest-growing alternative medicine modalities, and it’s practiced worldwide.
How is acupuncture used in IVF?
Acupuncture has several uses and benefits for patients undergoing IVF. First, multiple studies have shown acupuncture can significantly reduce discomfort associated with egg retrieval or ovum pick-up (OPU), offering pain relief that’s equal or superior to conventional pain relief methods. Other studies show acupuncture performed before and after embryo transfer can improve a patient’s odds of becoming pregnant. In fact, many studies show higher rate of success for women who choose to have acupuncture treatment when undergoing IVF. In addition, acupuncture during IVF shows promise for:
- Balancing hormones necessary for both ovulation and pregnancy
- Reducing stress
- Improving the quality of the eggs
- Increasing the thickness of the endometrium (uterine lining) necessary for successful egg implantation and fetal growth
- Increasing blood flow to your uterus and other organs
Does acupuncture treatment hurt?
Acupuncture needles are very thin -- much thinner than the needles used in immunizations -- and they’re not placed deeply into your skin. As a result, most people report minimal or no discomfort with treatment. Any discomfort that does occur tends to occur when the needles are placed. Once the needles are in place, most people say they feel no discomfort at all.
Is acupuncture safe?
Absolutely; in fact, it’s so safe, it’s routinely used during pregnancy to help prevent morning sickness, pain, tiredness, and other pregnancy-related symptoms.
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