As an acupuncturist, who had 8 years of education and over 30 years of clinical experience in both Chinese and Western medicine, I watched these clinical studies with a mixed feeling.
On one hand, they popularized the application of acupuncture in the mainstream medical establishment and raised its credibility and awareness among medical professionals and patients.
On the other hand, most of these clinical studies completely ignored many fundamentals of TCM and only used a very limited sets of acupoints rigidly in the search of some “miracle combination of acupoints” to boost the IVF pregnancy rate. It should not come as a surprise that sometimes these clinical studies produced less-than-optimal results. Consequently, many fertility specialists are still hesitate to recommend acupuncture as a complementary therapy to patients. However, most fertility doctors could agree with the findings of a meta-analysis published in British Medical Journal: Acupuncture around ET is safe, makes patients feel better and may increase the success rate of IVF.
As of 2012, the trend is pretty clear, infertility clinics that encourage patients to do Pre and Post ET acupuncture are increasing. I and my colleagues in Sinocare have performed acupuncture in all six infertility clinics in Montreal and sometimes several times a week.
Ten years ago, I probably saw a handful of infertility patients a year and none of them were referred by fertility clinics. Today, I see the same amount of infertility patients in less than an hour. To me, this is nothing short of monumental change.
If two acupuncture sessions, one before and one after embryo transfer during IVF, are proven to increase pregnancy rate by 43.43%, imaging what long term acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine treatment could do for you in treating infertility.