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Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia is one of the most common rheumatic disorders in the world behind arthritis. People suffer from fibromyalgia experience a wide range of symptoms, including pain, aches and muscle tenderness and stillness, fatigue, with sleep disorders and intestinal bowel symptoms. Fibromyalgia often been diagnosed if you have 11 out of 18 specific points on the body are painful or tender to pressure. Interestingly, many of these tender points are similar to the acupuncture points.   Acupuncture TCM and Fibromyalgia   According to the theories of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and acupuncture, imbalance and blockage of the Qi (vital energy) flow can result in symptoms and signs that reflect a Western diagnosis of fibromyalgia. Qi (pronounced “chee”) is the vital energy that animates and supports the functions of the body. It flows through specific pathways, called meridians, and provides nourishment for the entire body. Our bodies try to maintain a healthy balance of Qi flow through the meridian system. Should the supply of Qi has changed, or the flow of Qi has been disrupted, the pain starts. Cause of pain – TCM explanation   Where there is blockage in the meridian, there is pain Where there is malnutrition of the area, there is pain   When Qi is abundant and freely circulating throughout the body, there is health and pain-free living. When Qi becomes “blocked”, or The supply of Qi is inadequate, the pain or stiffness related to fibromyalgia appears.   What do you do to help my fibromyalgia?   Firstly, we will ask you a few questions including: Where are the pain; How long do you have the pain,...

Arthritis

  If you live with arthritis, you know what a challenge it can be to find relief from joint pain and other symptoms. But there are many things you can do to manage and control your arthritis and live a healthy, active life. Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) can be a powerful addition to any treatment plan – without causing harmful side effects. Arthritis according to Western Medicine   Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common type of arthritis. It occurs when the cartilage between the joints breaks down, usually affecting the hips, hands, knees, low back, or neck. Some factors can increase your risk, including a joint injury, being overweight, aging, and genetics. Putting stress on a joint through repetitive motion can also increase your risk. Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is another common type. This chronic condition occurs when the lining of the joints becomes inflamed, and can lead to long term joint damage and even loss of movement. Women are two to three times more likely to get RA than men. RA often starts in the hands or feet, and usually affects the same joints on both sides of the body. Symptoms include: Warm, swollen or tender joints Joint stiffness, especially in the morning Fatigue Flu-like symptoms such as fever Weakness Treatment options   Treatment generally focuses on relieving pain and preventing further joint damage. Often this is done through the use of anti-inflammatory drugs and other medications, as well as through self-care and physical therapy. In some cases, surgery may even be needed. Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)- A whole body approach to relief Causes of...

Influence of acupuncture on idiopathic male infertility in assisted reproductive technology

The clinical effects of acupuncture on idiopathic male infertility in sperm parameter and on therapeutic results in assisted reproductive technology were investigated. 22 patients failed in intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) with idiopathic male infertility were treated with acupuncture twice weekly for 8 weeks, followed by ICSI treatment again. The sperm concentration, motility, morphology, fertilization rates and embryo quality were observed. The research showed that: Quick sperm motility after acupuncture (18.3% +/- 9.6%) was significantly improved as compared with that before treatment (11.0% +/- 7.5%, P < 0.01). The normal sperm ratio was increased after acupuncture (21.1% +/- 10.4% vs 16.2% +/- 8.2%, P < 0.05). The fertilization rates after acupuncture (66.2%) were obviously higher than that before treatment (40.2%, P < 0.01). There was no significant difference in sperm concentration and general sperm motility between before and after acupuncture. The embryo quality after acupuncture was improved, but the difference between them was not significant (P > 0.05). The researchers concluded that acupuncture can improve sperm quality and fertilization rates in assisted reproductive technology. Reference Zhang M1, Huang G, Lu F, Paulus WE, Sterzik K. J Huazhong Univ Sci Technolog Med Sci....

Pregnancy Acupuncture

Pregnancy is a time of extraordinary physical and emotional change. It’s also a time when it’s more important than ever to support and care for your well-being. Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) can help you meet the unique challenges of pregnancy, ensuring optimal health for you and your baby in a safe and natural way. Acupuncture for pregnancy- what to expect? Acupuncture has been used in China for thousands of years to regulate the female reproductive system. Acupuncture and TCM are based on the concept that Qi (pronounced “Chee”) or vital energy, flows through the body in channels called meridians. Practitioners of acupuncture and TCM work to balance the Qi in the body’s meridian and organ systems by manipulating corresponding points on the body. For a healthy pregnancy, treatment is often recommended once a month with weekly treatments in the last month. However, your practitioner will tailor your treatment entirely to your needs and choose points based on your unique symptoms and concerns. Since some acupuncture points should not be used during pregnancy, it’s important to choose a practitioner experienced in prenatal acupuncture. It’s also important to discuss any treatments or herbal supplements with all of your prenatal health care providers. Relief for common concerns Regular balancing treatments throughout your pregnancy can enhance your health as well as your baby’s health, potentially preventing complications and positively influencing the development of your baby. Many mothers-to-be find themselves facing anxiety, fatigue, back pain, heartburn, nausea, and other symptoms as a result of the many new demands being placed on their bodies. Acupuncture has been found to effectively relieve many of...

IVF Acupuncture support

Traditionally acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine have been used to treat infertility both for men and women for a few thousand years. Recently a number of clinical studies have shown a significant increase in pregnancy rates in women undergoing in vitor fertilization (IVF). At Almond Wellness Centre acupuncture clinics, our acupuncture IVF support programme is based on these evidence-based protocols. We have designed a number of treatment plans which your practitioner will discuss which suits you the best. Acupuncture on the day of embryo transfer Treatment Two acupuncture treatment on the day of embryo transfer: One before the transfer and another one after. Each treatment lasts from 25 to 30 minutes. Acupuncture before and during the medication phase of IVF Clinical trials have shown that acupuncture treatment before and during IVF increases blood flow to the uterus and ovaries. In addition, acupuncture appears to regulate fertility hormones which may contribute to follicle development and increased implantation. These trials reported increased pregnancy rates based on this protocol. Treatment: Two treatments per week for six weeks before egg retrieval (optimal) plus treatment at the time of embryo transfer (schedule 1)   Acupuncture three days after egg collection We recommend that you have an acupuncture treatment three days after egg collection to help prepare a calm environment for the arrival of an embryo for day five transfers. This treatment can be combined with the programs above. Treatment One treatment 2~3 days after the egg collection Acupuncture for frozen embryo transfer including donor eggs Acupuncture treatment before and during IVF increases blood flow to the uterus and ovaries. And acupuncture appears to regulate fertility...

IVF acupuncture protocol at Almond Wellness Centre

When to use Acupuncture and /or Chinese medicine with IVF Preparation for first IVF cycle with patients with underlying issues Repeated embryo implantation failure Maternal age greater than 35 years old Poor responders to FSH stimulation resulting in low number of follicles Poor quality follicles that do not fertilise Male factor infertility Protocols Preparation for IVF cycle For a client who will be starting her IVF stimulation we suggest a 3 month preparation for the body. In this time we can try to address any conditions that could affect the IVF being successful. During the three months preparation treatments practitioners can use a combination of Acupuncture, cupping, massage therapy, moxibusion, dietary therapy, vitamins and Chinese herbal medicine. Once the client begins her drug stimulation all Chinese herbs are stopped to ensure that drug herb interactions do not occur. However Acupuncture is continued twice weekly until transfer. On the day of the transfer we suggest Acupuncture before and after. After the transfer the client will continue twice weekly acupuncture. Some examples of conditions that this treatment may be useful in; Excess weight Amenorrhea Age related infertility Endometriosis PCOS Luteal phase defect No ovulation or no regular ovulation Repeated embryo implantation failure A client who has repeated implantation failure may choose to see us for a 3 month preparation as above or see us during a natural cycle FET (frozen embryo transfer). In the later we suggest Acupuncture twice weekly before transfer and pre/post Acupuncture on the day of the transfer. Some examples of conditions this treatment may be useful in; Repeated IVF transfers will no success Repeated miscarriages with no...

Acupuncture Menopause Trial

  Have troublesome hot flushes? Volunteers wanted for acupuncture study The University of Melbourne, in collaboration with Jean Hailes for Women’s Health and Monash/RMIT/Southern Cross Universities is looking for healthy postmenopausal women who can attend for 10 free sessions of acupuncture (either real or placebo) as part of a study on acupuncture for hot flushes. Eligibility criteria: You need to be over 40 Have not had acupuncture in the past TWO years Having regular hot flushes Have not had a hysterectomy or your ovaries removed At least 12 months since your last menstrual period Have not started any treatment for hot flushes within the past 12 weeks Not taking hormone replacement therapy Willing to attend for acupuncture (real or placebo) at the nearest location over 8 weeks Treatments are provided by Dr. Richard Zeng (TCM Dr.) at Coburg and Ringwood clinic, and other experienced acupuncturists located in St Kilda, Bentleigh, Rosanna, Mount Waverley, Bundoora and Melton. Treatments last for 30 minutes except for the first treatment which is 45 minutes. For more information please see: www.gp.unimelb.edu.au/acupause email: gp-acupause@unimelb.edu.au or call 03...

Nutrients for Female fertility, Pregnancy, Breast feeding and beyond

Nutrients for Female fertility Pregnancy, Breast feeding and beyond   Iron   This nutrient is important for the correct formation of foetal blood, brain, eyes, bones and an overall healthy growth rate. It is also vital for a healthy immune system, mucous membranes, for general health and fertility. However many women do not realise how important iron is very important in fertility health. Women with low iron stores could suffer anovulation (no ovulation). In a Harvard University study of 18,500 women, women supplementing iron were 40% less likely to suffer from fertility problems. During pregnancy there is an increased need for iron due to greater red blood cell mass and plasma volume. Iron should be increased in the 2nd and 3rd trimesters as the foetus will draw on the mother’s iron stores to prepare itself for the 4-6 months after birth (because breast milk is low in iron). Deficiency increases the risk of anaemia, pre-term delivery and low birth weight Women with low iron are suggested to supplement 10-20mcg daily, however if you are prone to constipation a liquid supplement is more gentle on the stomach; we suggest capsules by bio-ceuticals or liquid spatone. Also note iron will not be absorbed with calcium, so if taking a supplement make sure to separate these. Inorganic iron supplements can bind up in the gut and cause constipation; they also destroy Vitamin E and compete for absorption with zinc; therefore, use of organic iron supplements and chelates are preferable. Vitamin C enhances the absorption of iron. Natural sources include green leafy vegetables, dried beans, black strap molasses, lean meat (organic/chemical free), dried apricots,...

Acupuncture & fertility

The treatment of infertility with acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) dates back 2,000 years. These ancient, time-tested techniques improve fertility rates and support a woman’s whole body, unlocking unlimited potential for health, healing and childbearing. A landmark study published in the medical journal Fertility & Sterility found that acupuncture dramatically improves the chances of becoming pregnant when used in conjunction with other assisted reproductive techniques. Researchers from Weill Cornell Medical Centre in New York reviewed studies and concluded that acupuncture helps to: Increase blood flow to the uterus, which improves the chances of an ovum implanting on the uterine wall; Reduce anxiety, stress, and the hormones that are secreted during stressful situations that significantly decrease fertility; Normalize hormone and endocrine systems that regulate ovulation, especially in women with polycystic ovarian syndrome; Positively affect the hypothalamic-pituitary-ovarian axis, which plays a key role in fertility; Regulate menstrual cycle. In a study published in Human Reproduction Journal, an ultrasound was used to evaluate blood flow to the uterus during acupuncture treatment. The study found blood flow increases during treatment. According to Dr. Nancy Snyderman, “when acupuncture needles are placed correctly, it can affect the nervous system. The idea is that if you stimulate the nervous system, you can make the uterus quiet and allow blood to flow.” Relaxing the uterus and increasing blood flow allows for the successful implant of an embryo within the uterine lining. Another study appearing in the British Medical Journal concluded that acupuncture can be offered as a significant, clinically relevant adjunct to In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF). Acupuncture and TCM can raise the fertility potential for women...

A good night’s sleep can help you conceive

  Recent research has shown that women who were given melatonin could double their chances of getting pregnant through IVF. The work was presented at the world congress of fertility and sterility in Munich and published in the Journal of Pineal Research. The team found that melatonin significantly increased melatonin concentrations in women”s follicles and significantly decreased concentrations of damaging 8-OhdG. The results showed 50% of the follicles taken from the women given melatonin were successful transferred into the womb, compared with 22.8% of the control group. Pregnancy rates in the melatonin group were 19% compared with 10.2% of the control. So what is melatonin and how does it help? Melatonin is a naturally occurring compound found in humans. It is produced by the pineal gland to form part of the sleep-wake cycle. It chemically causes drowsiness, aids sleep and decreases body temperature. Production is increased by less light in the retina and decreased with the increase of light, naturally in response to the time of day. Melatonin is a powerful anti-oxidant that is it repairs free radical damaging caused by stress oxidation. It is considered more powerful as an anti-oxidant than Vitamin A, C or E. Natural secretion of melatonin occurs from 9pm till 7.30am at approximately between 5-25mcg. The melatonin secretion naturally decreases as we age causing more restlessness and trouble sleeping. So how can I naturally increase my melatonin? There are several ways in which we can naturally increase you melatonin here are a few simple ways; GO TO BED EARLY Going to bed early and waking early has a significant effect on your overall sleep....

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