Ivf endometriosis and acupuncture - Fertility Network UK

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Ivf endometriosis and acupuncture


Hi I was just wondering has anyone else tried acupuncture during or before they started their ivf journey? I have endometriosis my tubes aren't blocked, but I've never been pregnant. My partner has a son from a previous relationship. So I was wondering if acupuncture is worth a go, and what are people's thoughts etc on it please? Xxx

13 Replies

I started acupuncture about 8 months ago so way before my IVF treatment which is about to start in October. Was hoping it would help me fall pregnant naturally but sadly that wasn't the case. I love acupuncture and if nothing else it has helped me relax and focus on my mind and body. My acupuncturist is also so caring and kind and we always have a good chat before treatment... I swear he's like a therapist as well because Ive shed so many tears and he knows more about my cycle than my husband! Lol Anyway I look forward to every appointment and im willing to try anything that will help. Good studies have shown it to be helpful. But like anything else I think you have to be consistent at it and it won't cure anything overnight or after one session. It is pricey but so is IvF and you're not guaranteed a positive outcome from that either. So I think if you go into it with more a holistic overall wellness approach and without high expectations, it will be worth it.

I had acupuncture for both my ivf rounds, my second round I had a different acupuncturist who specialises in fertility acupuncture which I think is important to have. I find it really relaxing and still have it done now at 23 weeks pregnant just not as often as I had it done every week while doing ivf. It's compeltely personal choice you could maybe try one session and see what you think about it.

Thank you all for replying, ye I thought it would help me relax which I need lol. I have to go and have a scan in November to check my eggs womb etc and it's my partners 2nd sperm test, how long after that did you all start your meds etc?xx

Hi. I have endo, only one ovary and tube (lost the other due to an endo cyst in2016 which is why we went to ivf)

I didn't do acupuncture as I couldn't find anyone locally that didn't charge a premium when you say the words fertility and ivf! A bit like when you wedding, the prices magically increase(!)

I did some reflexology which I found very relaxing and had massages to try to stay sane throughout the treatment.

Got referred for ivf via nhs in may, fertility clinic in August, got ivf funding in sept, first ivf clinic appointment 31st December, treatment started Feb. Found out we had male factors on top of my solo ovary and had icsi.

Think timelines are very dependant on the clinic you go to in regard to how busy they are and where you are at with your cycle.

Good luck in turning from an endo warrior to an ivf warrior

LGCD in reply to emmab178

Hi thanks for your reply, I get what you mean about the prices phoned a few today and one woman suggested I needed 10 sessions 😂😂. Think I will do the same and try massages to try and relax me, by the sounds of things I have read it is a very stressful time. Only came across this app yesterday and found it's so helpful. Thank you for your help xx

emmab178 in reply to LGCD

No problem.

I think eventually you get to a point where if someone told you if you streaked naked down the street it would increase your chances you'd think about doing it (!)

I just had normal massages but there's a really good Thai lady who used to basically batter me who after ET I told I was pregnant and she said it's a good job I told her because too much pressure on the wrong part of the feet could cause harm.

The other one was a very gentle reflexology where I think just venting to her for an hour once a week whilst she rubbed my feet allowed me to get it all out. Why don't these people do lessons for my husband to be taught how to do it?!?!


I didn't try acupuncture during my IVF attempts, as I don't really believe it can make someone fertile. Relaxed and positive - yes, but it has no other significant influence. Why I'm so sure? My husband tried to quit smoking for like 4 years and decided to follow his sister's advise and to go to acupuncture. He had 10 visits, but they didn't help, not even in a little bit. It only raised his mood and improved his body state. The only thing that made him quit was our desire to become parents.

But I really hope that you will become a parent! Wish you a successful fertility journey!

Thank you to everyone who is replying. I think it's great we can share our experiences and help other people. It's hard talking to people that aren't or haven't been through this even though they try to be supportive. Fingers crossed we all get positive results and become parents. Good luck everyone xxx

There is lots of positive research about acupuncture and IVF though (if you look into the zita west clinic success stats and many others for example) as it can help significantly with endometriosis and blood flow if timed right through the IVF cycle - it's not going to work for everyone and it's not a cure all but I honestly don't think I would have got through the last round of IVF without regular acupuncture.

I managed to find an acupuncturist who specialised in IVF and endometriosis and the information she provided me with was so much more informative than the hospital! It was also really relaxing at times of great stress and I think massively contributed to our BFP - was given a 2% chance from the hospital but now 26 weeks and still see her every 4-6 weeks just as a check in! The hospital were able to tell when I had had sessions particularly during stimming as she really focused on blood flow which is a massive issue with endometriosis and I was able to see her straight after ET too which has proven effectiveness.

I also did hypnotherapy CDs - zita west and Helen McPherson IVF belief which were great at helping with relaxation and going to sleep and had a super healthy diet and supplements - when you're putting your body through so much stress and drugs I totally get the eastern philosophy of combatting that as much as possible to try to balance your body - if you can afford it I would say give it a go but everyone's journey is very personal - wishing you all the best on yours x

LGCD in reply to Linda78

Ah thank you Linda and congratulations bet your so excited 👶🏻, what sort of diet did you eat? I have looked up different diets some say do this others say don't, and for the life of me I can't eat fish I never have been, I can't even touch tuna 🤢🤢🤢. Ye a Chinese lady I spoke to on the phone yesterday specialised in fertility acupuncture and she said with me having endometriosis I would be hard inside and I need the blood to flow, she said to come 3 months before I start but I don't know when that will be, we go 2nd November for my partners 2nd sperm test and I have my eggs etc tested then we don't know if we have to wait 12 months or what which we won't find out until 28th November. I need something to relax me as I stress over everything, especially now I've stopped smoking and drinking can't do one without the other lol I'm hopeless. Good luck with everything xx

I am not quite at the ivf stage yet (had a lap and dye yesterday so awaiting full results but I've got polycystic ovaries and yesterday confirmed endometriosis).

Regarding acupuncture, once I was diagnosed with PCO's I started acupuncture, I can't say it particularly helped regulate my cycle, but certainly has given me a greater understanding of my body, my cycle and to be honest, just a time to relax and let it all out... I currently go once a fortnight (due to costs) but if we do start ivf (we also have male factor infertility) I'll ramp it up to once a week. Why not give it a try and see how you get on? It's not for everyone and I think the acupuncturist defo has a lot to do with the overall experience!

I would maybe wait till November then to get an idea of timings before starting acupuncture as it is really expensive and it can be a long time from tests till you actually start - ours felt like forever but it was prob about 6-7 months - I didn't start acupuncture until just before i was starting medication but I hadn't thought of it before then!

In terms of diet I followed what the acupuncturist recommended (there was definitely oily fish but not too much so sure you can replace it with something else!) - red meat was out as that can be an aggravator with endo...lots of nuts and seeds, pulses, organic veg, avocado, some fruit but limited as focus was on reducing sugar, lean meat, caffeine free tea (I just switched to herbal), loads of water, no alcohol etc - zita west does an IVF diet book actually which your partner can do too - mine didn't do all of it (was a bit of a chore to get him to even cut down booze!) but he did make an effort in the 6 weeks leading up to him having to do his bit and he also took wellman conception tablets daily for about 6 months plus before which really did seem to increase his sperm count and quality...

I prob got a bit obsessed with it all but it seemed to work for us with such tiny chances and I really did figure that if I was going to put my body (& mind!) through so much then I needed to give the IVF the best chance possible!

Good luck!x

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