Covelo Acupuncture

FertilityEndometriosis and fertility

Endometriosis and fertility

Endometriosis is a chronic condition characterised by growth of endometrial tissue in sites other than the uterus, most commonly in the pelvic cavity, but also in other parts of the body (RCOG 2006).

This ectopic tissue responds to the hormonal changes of the menstrual cycle, with subsequent bleeding, inflammation, and pain. If the ovaries are affected, endometriotic ovarian cysts may develop (Bulun 009).  Although the condition may be asymptomatic, common symptoms include dysmenorrhoea, dyspareunia, non-cyclical pelvic and abdominal pain, and subfertility.

It has been shown that acupuncture treatment may specifically be of benefit in people with endometriosis by:

  • providing pain relief – by stimulating nerves located in muscles and other tissues, acupuncture leads to release of endorphins and other neurohumoral factors, and changes the processing of pain in the brain and spinal cord (Zhao 2008, Han 2004, Zijlstra 2003, Pomeranz 1987).
  • reducing inflammation – by promoting release of vascular and immunomodulatory factors Kavoussi 2007, Zijlstra 2003).
  • regulating levels of prostaglandins (Jin 2009)

This lovely patient initially came to see me to help manage her endometriosis, which caused her to have very painful periods. We worked on the pain for a couple of months and once she was having comfortable periods, we moved on to working towards a pregnancy. Endometriosis can sometimes make it harder to get pregnant, but she remained optimistic and here is the result!

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