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Reproductive medicine: research projects in acupuncture
  1. Elisabet Stener-Victorin
  1. Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Kvinnokliniken, Sahlgrenska University Hospital, SE-413 45 Göteborg, Sweden, Email: elisabet.stener-victorin{at}medstud.gu.se

    Summary

    Two studies are briefly reported in which electroacupuncture is found to be beneficial in aspects of infertility treatment. They are the first in a series planned to investigate acupuncture in this area of gynaecology.

    1. A high impedance in the blood flow of the uterine arteries has been shown to reduce the pregnancy rate of in-vitro fertilisation treatment. So ten healthy, but infertile, women with a high uterine artery pulsatility index were treated with electroacupuncture twice a week over a period of four weeks. There was a significant reduction (p<0.0001) in pulsatility index that was maintained for a further two weeks.

    2. Twenty-four women with polycystic ovary syndrome were treated with electroacupuncture over a period of three months. Ovulation patterns were observed by daily recording of basal body temperature over nine months, including three months before treatment and three after. The main outcome was that electroacupuncture induced regular ovulation in more than a third of the women. The women were found to fall into two categories: a group in whom regular ovulation was induced following electroacupuncture who were less androgenic and had less metabolic disturbance, and a group who were more affected by the syndrome and who did not respond to treatment.

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