Many women opt to use acupuncture for egg freezing in an attempt at prolonging fertility when parenthood is not possible or desirable at the present time for personal, professional, or health reasons. Though a woman is born with all the eggs she will ever have, eggs released when she is younger are often of better quality and more likely to result in a healthy pregnancy than those produced later in life. Consequently, a woman in her forties who has difficulty conceiving naturally can get pregnant easily using her own eggs frozen when she was in her thirties. Frozen eggs remain fertile for years, allowing a woman to preserve her fertility and have in vitro fertilization once she is ready to become a parent.
While Western medicine has reached significant success levels with IUI and IVF procedures, and these interventions are immediately successful for many women, there is also a significant percentage of those who do not respond well to treatment. One of the reasons for this is that though Western medicine can stimulate production, it does not yet have an effective means to increase egg quality leading up to egg freezing or a cycle of IVF. This is where Chinese medicine becomes the crucial missing piece, for acupuncture and Chinese herbal therapy, along with necessary nutritional and lifestyle changes possess the ability of significantly improving the odds of success, especially in patients diagnosed with reduced or low ovarian reserve.
From Chinese medicine’s perspective, a woman should be capable of conceiving for the entirety of her reproductive life, from her first cycle to the onset of menopause. A deviation from this balanced state is seen as a symptom indicating a shift from optimum reproductive and overall health. Within the framework of Chinese medicine, any symptom is considered a manifestation of an internal imbalance that can be rectified by identifying and treating the underlying disharmony, a concept that applies to fertility as much as to any other condition. Chinese medicine aims to create a better environment for the production of higher quality eggs by holistically supporting the entire body, rather than focusing solely on the reproductive system.
When considering acupuncture in preparation for egg freezing, it is optimal to start treatments at least 3 months prior, since that time frame during which the follicles are in the final stage of maturation is the most effective period for increasing follicle growth and quality. Chinese medicine is also highly effective during the period of artificial hormonal stimulation leading up to egg retrieval, as it can help maximize egg production during this time by increasing blood flow to the ovaries, reducing stress hormones and providing the raw material necessary for the production of better quality eggs.
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