1st IVF cycle Preparation Advice. Ac... - Fertility Network UK

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1st IVF cycle Preparation Advice. Acupuncture?


Good morning all

This is my first post but have been following for a week since we got a start date for our first IVF. I've already seen what a fabulous supportive community this is, so..... I thought I'd ask for some advice.

I've seen some great advice on here about preparation in the run up to the treatment and have given up alcohol & caffeine and am mainly eating healthily and exercising. I've also been taking a higher dose of folic acid and prenatal vitamins since we first saw the GP 18mths ago. I was wondering whether there was anything else I could / should be doing?

A friend recommended acupuncture, do you guys think it's worth it? And if so, do you have any recommendations for practitioners in East London? (Please Inbox me if we're not allowed to post on here). I spoke to an IVF specialist near work yesterday and he was so blunt about how low my success chances are given my age (40) he effectively said he would hesitate to take me on as I'd impact his success rates!! I was obviously well aware that the odds are not in my favour hence trying everything I can, but was a bit shocked by his approach and would now obviously prefer to go with a recommendation rather than just credentials on a website

Any help gratefully received.

Thanks all!

17 Replies

Hi there and welcome 🙋🏽

I had acupuncture when we were trying to conceive naturally and DH had it over our first IVF cycle.

I am now going back to it for our second cycle, but my acupuncturist said it is better to do once you are stimming and after transfer as they can help increase blood flow to that area. He didn't think it was as necessary through down regulating.

Worth giving it a go though. It is quite pricey but even once a month may help.

Wishing you lots of luck 🤞🏼 Xx

Hidden in reply to Kloulou83

Thanks for the reply, I've spoken to someone this afternoon who has suggested that I try for the next couple of weeks and then as you say, focus on the stimming and transfer. Was really good to hear that she said the same as you, so thanks for the guidance. Hopefully if nothing else it will help me relax which can only be a good thing heh?!


I think Acupuncture is a very personal choice with some people feeling it helps and others not so. I have my first appointment at the fertility clinic next week and am also 40. While the odds may be against us age wise it only takes one healthy egg and it sounds like you are doing all you can to be healthy.

I was shocked at my appointment with the consultant prior to me being referred to the clinic on the bluntness of comments regarding my age but need to let it go over my head.

I wish you all the luck with your journey xx

louisear in reply to Brenbert

love your positive approach. It's the only way. If my consultant had mentioned the fact I was 40 one more time at our appointment I swear I'd have hit him! Best of luck xx

Hidden in reply to louisear

Thanks Brenbert & good luck with your appointment next week. I've actually been really lucky with the clinic, we're entitled to one NHS IVF and the professionals we've seen at the hospital have been very open about the reduced chances, but never negative. I'm completely with you that we have to think positive, that it only takes that one special embryo to stick, and I'm focusing on that too!

Oh sod the age comments, I'm well over forty and pregnant. Obviously not out of the woods yet but I really think we need to be examined and treated as individual cases rather than numbers on the page. And in terms of preparation - you seem to have everything covered but think about adding some C vitamin if it feels you're not getting a full dose out of your diet. It helps me this time of the year. I tend to take a fizzy one in the morning. And then full fat milk and a hot water bottle during stimms. Otherwise just enjoy the ride lol and welcome 😄😄 xoxo

Hidden in reply to Nesfin

Congratulations on your positive result, what wonderful news. Wishing you all the very best for a smooth journey from here on in. Thanks for the tip on the Vitamin C too, will pick some of those up this week. Had read that milk was good, but hadn't realised it needed to be full fat, haven't drunk that since I was a teenager!

Nesfin in reply to Hidden

I've been told that full fat (or semi-skinned as second choice) should be the best one.. I'm also avoiding caffeine and artificial sweeteners where the latter is easier said than done - sweeteners seem to find their way into everything, even kids food although they are banned from kids in many countries!

Hidden in reply to Nesfin

I've cut right back on caffeine and am trying to reduce sugar but hadn't even thought about looking out for artificial sweeteners. Thank you, will keep an eye out now.

Buffy21 in reply to Nesfin

Loving your comments 😘👌👏xx


Hi Pint_sized. Just wanted to wish you well with all of this, and of course for success. I do believe that acupuncture can enrich blood flow to the reproductive organs, which can only be good. Usually concentrated around the build-up to egg collection. Good luck! Diane

Hidden in reply to DianeArnold

Thanks Diane, have managed to speak to someone very local to home today who has worked with Zita West so hoping it will be worth a shot!

DianeArnoldAdministrator in reply to Hidden

Brilliant! Pleased you've found someone. Diane

Hiya Im not an aggressive person but...I would punch that consultant in the face if he spoke to me like that!! I'm 39yrs.Do you have to stay with him?!

As for acupuncture I'm having it. Both prior to IVF and duing. I like it. Not sure if it does work but there's evidence to say it does have a positive effect and the calming and visualisation part of it I like.

All the best of luck on your journey xx

Hidden in reply to Buffy21

Thanks Buffy. Fortunately it wasn't a consultant but an acupuncturist (so much for their caring, holistic approach!)

Have managed to find someone local to home so will be starting tomorrow and seeing how it goes. As you say, even if it just helps with the calming and visualisation side I'm willing to give it a try.

Keeping everything crossed for you for a BFP very soon. X

Hello! I'm starting my second round tomorrow and started accupuncture this week and will have it weekly upto transfer then before and after transfer. The woman I booked in with said most clinics do it there as well, so i'll be hopefully having it right before transfer and then immediately afterwards. I'm 39, so trying anything that may help. Good luck for your upcoming cycle xx

Hidden in reply to baby2016

Thanks baby2016, good to know that you're starting it now and that I haven't left it too late. I hadn't thought about calling the clinic actually, but our clinic is a real pain to get to, so I think someone closer to home will work well for the run up sessions, good tip though to ask whether if needed I could potentially see someone else in / near the clinic on the day. All the very best with your cycle, really hope this is your time. x

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