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Acupuncture changes reproductive hormone levels in patients with ovarian deficiency – prospective observational study

Conclusion: electroacupuncture could decrease serum FSH and LH levels, and increase estrogen levels in women with ovarian deficiency with little to no side-effects. To investigate the effects of electroacupuncture (EA) on serum FSH, E2, and LH levels, women with primary ovarian insufficiency (POI) were treated with EA once a day, five times a week for the first four weeks and once every other day, three times a week, for the following two months, and then were followed up for three months. Serum E2, FSH, and LH levels were measured at baseline, at the end of treatment, and during followup. A total of 11 women with POI were included in this prospective consecutive case series study. Compared with baseline, patients’ serum E2 increased, FSH decreased, and LH decreased (P = 0.002, 0.001, and 0.002, resp.) after EA treatment, and these effects persisted during followup. With treatment, 10 patients resumed menstruation (10/11, 90.91%), whereas one patient remained amenorrhea. During followup, two patients, including the one with amenorrhea during treatment, reported absence of menstruation. Temporary pain occurred occasionally, and no other adverse events were found during treatment. The results suggest that EA could decrease serum FSH and LH levels and increase serum E2 level in women with POI with little or no side effects; however, further randomized control trials are needed. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2013;2013:657234. doi: 10.1155/2013/657234. Epub 2013 Feb 28., Zhou K, Jiang J, Wu J, Liu Z. – Department of Acupuncture, Guang An Men Hospital, China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences, No. 5 Bei Xian Ge Street, Xuan Wu District, Beijing 100053, China ; Department of Physical Therapy,...

Acupuncture and acupressure for pain management in labour and birth: A critical narrative review of current systematic review evidence

Results: The RCTs included in these systematic reviews differed in terms of study designs, research questions, treatment protocols and outcome measures, and yielded some conflicting results. It may be inappropriate to include these together in a systematic review, or pooled analysis, of acupuncture for labour with an expectation of an overall conclusion for efficacy. Trials of acupuncture and acupressure in labour show promise, but further studies are required.The aim of this study is to examine current evidence from systematic reviews on the topic of acupuncture and acupressure for pain management in labour and birth, and to evaluate the methodological and treatment frameworks applied to this evidence. The use of current systematic reviews of the evidence for acupuncture and acupressure for labour and birth may be misleading. Appropriate methods and outcome measures for investigation of acupuncture and acupressure treatment should more carefully reflect the research question being asked, the use of pragmatic trials designs with woman–centred outcomes may be appropriate for evaluating the effectiveness of these therapies. Methods A search limited to systematic reviews of the MEDLINE, CINAHL, PUBMED, EMBASE and Cochrane databases was performed in December 2013 using the keywords ‘CAM’, ‘alternative medicine’, ‘complementary medicine’, ‘complementary therapies’, ‘traditional medicine’, ‘Chinese Medicine’, ‘Traditional Chinese Medicine’, ‘acupuncture’, ‘acupressure’, cross–referenced with ‘childbirth’, ‘birth’, labo*r’, and ‘delivery’. The quality of the evidence is also evaluated in the context of study design. Levett KM, et al., Complementary Therapies in Medicine,...

Acupuncture Relieves the Excessive Excitation of Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenal Cortex Axis Function and Correlates with the Regulatory Mechanism of GR, CRH, and ACTHR

Conclusion: The results explained that acupuncture regulated the stress reaction via promoting the combination of glucocorticoids (GC) with GR, and GR protein expression.It had been indicated in the previous studies that acupuncture relieved the excessive excitation of hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal cortex axis (HPAA) function induced by stress stimulation. But the changes in glucocorticoid receptor (GR) induced by acupuncture have not been detected clearly. The objective of the study was to observe the impacts of acupuncture on the protein expressions of corticotrophin releasing hormone (CRH), adrenocorticotropic hormone receptor (ACTHR), and GR under the physiological and stress states. The results showed that under the stress state, acupuncture upregulated the protein expression of GR in the hippocampus, hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus (PVN), and pituitary gland, downregulated the protein expression of GR in the adrenal cortex, and obviously reduced the protein expressions of CRH and ACTHR. Under the physiological state, acupuncture promoted GR protein expression in the hippocampus and CRH protein expression in the hippocampus and PVN. The results explained that acupuncture regulated the stress reaction via promoting the combination of glucocorticoids (GC) with GR, and GR protein expression. The increase of GR protein expression induced feedback inhibition on the overexpression of CRH and ACTHR, likely decreased GC level, and caused the reduction of GR protein expression in the adrenal cortex. Reference S.J. Wang et al., “Acupuncture relieves the excessive excitation of hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal cortex axis function and correlates with the regulatory mechanism of GR, CRH and ACTHR.” Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 495379, 9 pages....

Male fertility Chinese medicine acupuncture research

The Therapeutic Effects of a Traditional Chinese Medicine Formula Wuzi Yanzong Pill for the Treatment of Oligoasthenozoospermia: A Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials In this 2018 study of a traditional Chinese herbal formula and its effects for men with low sperm count and sperm with poor motility “…the WZYZ pill improved sperm quality by improving several semen parameters and decreasing DNA damage in oligoasthenozoospermia patients.” Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, Volume 2018 (2018), Article ID 2968025, 10 pages https://doi.org/10.1155/2018/2968025 Ming Peng Zhao, Xiao Shi, Grace Wing Shan Kong, Chi Chiu Wang, Justin Che Yuen Wu, Zhi Xiu Lin, Tin Chiu Li, and David Yiu Leung Chan Published 17 January 2018 Oligoasthenozoospermia is a crucial factor in male infertility. Wuzi Yanzong (WZYZ) pill is a popular traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) formula which has been used for male infertility treatment for years. However, its effects on semen quality remain controversial. We conducted a preregistered meta-analysis to assess the effect of WZYZ pill for the therapeutic effects on oligoasthenozoospermia. Five randomized controlled trials including 960 participants were selected from databases of domains in North-East Asian regions, PubMed, Embase, and Cochrane Library. WZYZ pill group yielded a greater mean increment on sperm concentration (5 trials: MD 5.99, 95% CI 2.12–9.85, ), sperm motility (5 trials: MD 4.57, 95% CI 0.47–8.68, ), sperm morphology (2 trials: MD −1.93, 95% CI −4.87–1.01, ), activity of acrosomal enzyme (2 trials: MD 28.27, 95% CI 12.41–44.14, ), volume of semen (2 trials: MD 0.56, 95% CI 0.21–0.91, ), and a decrement of sperm DNA fragmentation index (2 trials: MD −3.82, 95% CI −6.45–−1.19, ). However, qualities of selected studies...

Treatment of Chinese Herbal Medicine for Female Infertility.

Int Rev Neurobiol. 2017;135:233-247. doi: 10.1016/bs.irn.2017.02.011. Epub 2017 Apr 12. Jiang D1, Li L2, Zeng BY3 1Hallam Institution of TCM in Sheffield UK, Sheffield, United Kingdom. Electronic address: djiang52@hotmail.com. 2St. Mary’s Hospital Paddington, London, United Kingdom. 3Neurodegenerative Disease Research Group, Institute of Pharmaceutical Science, Faculty of Life Sciences & Medicine, King’s College, London, United Kingdom. Abstract Female infertility is when a woman of reproductive age and sexual active, without contraception, cannot get pregnant after a year and more or keeps having miscarriages. Although conventional treatments for infertility such as hormone therapy, in vitro fertilization and many more, helped many female patients with infertility get pregnant during past a few decades, it is far from satisfactory with prolonging treatment time frames and emotional and financial burden. In recent years, more patients with infertile problems are seeking to alternative and complementary medicines to achieve a better outcome. In particular, Chinese herbal medicine (CHM) is increasingly popular for treating infertility due to its effectiveness and complimentary with conventional treatments. However, the mechanisms of action of CHM in treating female infertility are not well understood. In this chapter authors reviewed research development of CHM applied in many infertile models and CHM clinical studies in many conditions associated with female infertility, published in past 15 years. The data of review showed that CHM has either specific target mechanisms of action or multitarget mechanisms of action, via regulating relevant hormone levels in female reproductive system, improving ovary function, enhancing uterine receptivity. More studies are warranted to explore the new drugs from CHM and ensure safety, efficacy, and consistency of CHM. KEYWORDS: Chinese herbal medicine; Conception; Female infertility; Female...

Effect of Chinese Herbal Medicine on Male Infertility

Jiang D1, Coscione A2, Li L3, Zeng BY4 1Hallam Institution of TCM in Sheffield UK, Sheffield, United Kingdom. Electronic address: djiang52@hotmail.com. 2The Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust, Harlow, United Kingdom. 3St Mary’s Hospital Paddington, London, United Kingdom. 4Institute of Pharmaceutical Science, King’s College, London, United Kingdom. Abstract Male infertility normally refers a male’s inability to cause pregnancy in a fertile female partner after 1 year of unprotected intercourse. Male infertility in recent years has been attracting increasing interest from public due to the evidence in decline in semen quality. There are many factors contributing to the male infertility including abnormal spermatogenesis; reproductive tract anomalies or obstruction; inadequate sexual and ejaculatory functions; and impaired sperm motility, imbalance in hormone levels, and immune system dysfunction. Although conventional treatments such as medication, surgical operation, and advanced techniques have helped many male with infertility cause pregnancy in their female partners, effectiveness is not satisfactory and associated with adverse effects. Chinese herbal medicine (CHM) has been used to improve male infertility in China for a very long time and has now been increasingly popular in Western countries for treating infertility. In this chapter we summarized recent development in basic research and clinical studies of CHM in treating male infertility. It has showed that CHM improved sperm motility and quality, increased sperm count and rebalanced inadequate hormone levels, and adjusted immune functions leading to the increased number of fertility. Further, CHM in combination with conventional therapies improved efficacy of conventional treatments. More studies are needed to indentify the new drugs from CHM and ensure safety, efficacy, and consistency of CHM. KEYWORDS: Chinese herbal medicine; Immune infertility; Male infertility;...

Treating Gynaecological Disorders with Traditional Chinese Medicine: A Review

Jue Zhou1 and Fan Qu2 J. Traditional, Complementary and Alternative Medicines 2009 Abstract Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) has significant advantages in treating gynaecological disorders. The paper has provided a brief introduction on the current progress of treating some gynaecological disorders including endometriosis, infertility, dysmenorrhea, abnormal uterine bleeding, premenstrual syndrome, menopausal syndrome, uterine fibroids, chronic pelvic inflammation, polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), cervicitis and vaginitis with Chinese Herbal Medicine (CHM) and acupuncture. The use of TCM in the field of assisted reproductive techniques (ART) has also been included in the review. In addition, thirty-two commonly used Chinese medicinal formulas in treating gynaecological disorders have been introduced. Keywords: Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), Chinese Herbal Medicine (CHM), acupuncture, gynaecological disorders,...

Acupuncture for the mental and emotional health of women undergoing IVF treatment: A comprehensive review

Article in Australian Journal of Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine 9(1):5-12 · January 2014 L.-E. Grant, S. Cochrane Abstract One in six Australian couples currently struggle with impaired fertility. In vitro fertilisation (IVF) has become the assisted reproductive technology (ART) of choice. The IVF process has inherent stresses: the invasive procedures; medication; knowledge that it might be the last possibility for pregnancy; and the high cost. Both authors have observed in different settings (one clinical and the other during a clinical trial) that women often reported an improved sense of wellbeing and emotional health due to the acupuncture intervention. This paper summarises the reported benefits of acupuncture treatment for mental and emotional health during IVF identified in published peer-reviewed research papers – both theoretically (pathogenesis and physiology) and clinically (with reference to acupuncture treatment and the therapeutic encounter). The trials reviewed, investigating mental and emotional health during IVF treatment, indicate acupuncture had positive outcomes including: reduced anxiety; reduced stress; less social and relationship concern and improved psychological coping. This paper suggests that reflecting on and valuing the therapeutic alliance, including its collaborative nature, the patient feeling cared for and a perception that practitioners are empathetic, could improve fertility outcomes and the emotional health of infertile women through the process of IVF...

Chinese herbal medicine for endometriosis

Andrew Flower1 , Jian Ping Liu2 , George Lewith3 , Paul Little4 , Qing Li2 1Complementary Medicine Research Unit, Dept Primary Medical Care, Southampton University, Ringmer, UK. 2Centre for Evidence-Based Chinese Medicine, Beijing University of Chinese Medicine, Beijing, China. 3Department of Primary Care, University of Southampton, Southampton, UK. 4Primary Care and Population Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, Aldermoor Health Centre, University of Southampton, Southampton, UK A B S T R A C T Background Endometriosis is characterized by the presence of tissue that is morphologically and biologically similar to normal endometrium in locations outside the uterus. Surgical and hormonal treatment of endometriosis have unpleasant side effects and high rates of relapse. In China, treatment of endometriosis using Chinese herbal medicine (CHM) is routine and considerable research into the role of CHM in alleviating pain, promoting fertility, and preventing relapse has taken place. This review is an update of a previous review published in the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2009, issue No 3. Objectives To review the effectiveness and safety of CHM in alleviating endometriosis-related pain and infertility. Search methods We searched the Menstrual Disorders and Subfertility Group Trials Register, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL) (The Cochrane Library) and the following English language electronic databases (from their inception to 31/10/2011): MEDLINE, EMBASE, AMED, CINAHL, and NLH. We also searched Chinese language electronic databases: Chinese Biomedical Literature Database (CBM), China National Knowledge Infrastructure (CNKI), Chinese Sci & Tech Journals (VIP), Traditional Chinese Medical Literature Analysis and Retrieval System (TCMLARS), and Chinese Medical Current Contents (CMCC). Selection criteria Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) involving CHM versus placebo, biomedical treatment, another CHM...

Is acupuncture effective in the treatment of pain in endometriosis?

Lund I1, Lundeberg T2. 1Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden. 2Rehabilitation Medicine University Clinic Stockholm, Danderyds Hospital AB, Stockholm, Sweden. Abstract INTRODUCTION: Endometriosis is a multifactorial, estrogen-dependent, inflammatory gynecological condition – often with long-lasting visceral pelvic pain of different origin, and infertility among women. Current management options for patients’ are often inadequate, with side effects for many for whom acupuncture techniques could be an alternative. Earlier studies have discussed the efficacy of acupuncture, but not its methodological aspects. OBJECTIVES: To summarize the documented clinical effects of acupuncture on rated visceral pelvic endometriosis-related pain, and associated variables among individuals, within and between studied groups, and to discuss the methodological treatment aspects. METHODS: Published full text clinical studies, case reports, and observational studies with abstracts written in English were searched by using the keywords “Acupuncture and Endometriosis” in databases such as PubMed, Web of Science, and CINAHL. The reporting guidelines, Standards for Reporting Interventions in Clinical Trials of Acupuncture was used for the methodological report. RESULTS: Three studies were found including 99 women, 13-40 years old, with diagnosed endometriosis. The studies were different in research design, needle stimulation techniques, and evaluation instruments. Methodological similarities were seven to12 needle insertions per subject/session, and 15-25 minutes of needle retention time. The needles were placed in lower back/pelvic-abdominal area, in the shank, feet, and hands. Treatment numbers varied from nine to 16 and patients received one to two treatments per week. Similarity in reported treatment effects in the quoted studies, irrespective of research design or treatment technique, was reported decrease of rated pain intensity. DISCUSSION: Meta-analysis is the standard procedure for the...

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