We have worked extensively with couples undergoing Alternative Reproductive techniques (ART), such as IUI and IVF.
It is our experience that our clients’ needs can be different while undergoing ART. We have developed three different treatment protocols to address our clients’ needs:
Conservative – This entails a few acupuncture visits during stimulation medications, around transfer time and post transfer or IUI. There are some vitamin recommendations and possible diet changes. This course is best for women who are just starting IUI or who are starting acupuncture while on IVf stimulation medications.
Moderate – This encompasses weekly acupuncture visits starting 6 weeks prior to transfer or expected IUI to help increase clients response to stimulation medications, increase circulation to the uterus, and to help the client relax. Some supplement, herbal and diet recommendations are made. This is best for clients who may have had one failed IVf cycle or 2 or more failed IUI cycles.
Aggressive – For this, you will have at least weekly if not twice weekly acupuncture visits with diet worksheets provided and a more aggressive supplement and herbal regime incorporated with the acupuncture. Many clients with the more aggressive treatment protocol start the process with a fertility cleanse that is administered by a practitioner at Dedham Acupuncture. Best for women who have Poor Ovarian Reserve (POF), high FSH, low AMH, repeated failed cycles and/or miscarriages. It can be started at least 6 weeks prior to transfer, if not 3-4 months prior to IVF.
When should I start acupuncture during IVF? We recommend starting acupuncture at least 6 weeks prior to your transfer date. However, even if you are taking the stimulation medications right now, you can still start acupuncture now and have acupuncture be effective. Acupuncture is cumulative and fertility is a process, so start now to build a foundation for optimal fertility health.
I read that acupuncture should be started 3 months prior to IVF. Is this true? It takes at least 90 days for a dominant follicle to mature and be ovulated, so yes, 3 months is optimal.
Do clients typically start 90 days before IVF? Not usually. Clients will elect to start acupuncture 90 days prior to IVf if they have had several miscarriages or failed IVF attempts.
Is it safe to take vitamins and herbs while undergoing IUI and IVF? Most vitamins are perfectly safe while undergoing IVf and IUI. If we decide to recommend herbs, we will do so while the client is not actively taking any medication. Once the client starts suppression or the stimulation medications, we make sure that the client discontinues the use of all herbs.
Twice a week sounds like a lot of acupuncture –is that necessary? Twice a week is a lot of acupuncture! It is not necessary in many cases – weekly is sufficient. BUT, for women who have a high FSH or a poor ovarian reserve, two treatments per week is necessary for a client to respond well during IVF. We also recommend visits twice a week for women who are in their forties or who have high FSH or POF and are looking to conceive naturally.
If you have any other questions, please call us today at (781) 686-2395, or you can schedule a consultation through our online booking system.