By Gerhard I; Postneek F.
[Auricular acupuncture in the treatment of female infertility]
Gynecological Endocrinology, 1992 Sep, 6(3):171-81.
(Requested library location(s) not linked. Try F PE
Abstract: Following a complete gynecologic--endocrinologic workup, 45 infertile
women suffering from oligoamenorrhea (n = 27) or luteal insufficiency (n =
18) were treated with auricular acupuncture. Results were compared to those
of 45 women who received hormone treatment. Both groups were matched for
age, duration of infertility, body mass index, previous pregnancies,
menstrual cycle and tubal patency.
Women treated with acupuncture had 22
pregnancies, 11 after acupuncture, four spontaneously, and seven after
appropriate medication. Women treated with hormones had 20 pregnancies,
five spontaneously, and 15 in response to therapy. Four women of each group
had abortions. Endometriosis (normal menstrual cycles) was seen in 35%
(38) of the women of each group who failed to respond to therapy with
pregnancy. Only 4 of the women who responded to acupuncture or hormone
treatment with a pregnancy had endometriosis, and 7% had normal cycles. In
addition, women who continued to be infertile after hormone therapy had
higher body mass indices and testosterone values than the therapy
responders from this group.
Women who became pregnant after acupuncture
suffered more often from menstrual abnormalities and luteal insufficiency
with lower estrogen, thyrotropin (TSH) and dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate
(DHEAS) concentrations than the women who achieved pregnancy after hormone
treatment. Although the pregnancy rate was similar for both groups,
eumenorrheic women treated with acupuncture had adnexitis, endometriosis,
out-of-phase endometria and reduced postcoital tests more often than those
Twelve of the 27 women (44%) with menstrual
irregularities remained infertile after therapy with acupuncture compared
to 15 of the 27 (56%) controls treated with hormones, even though hormone
disorders were more pronounced in the acupuncture group. Side-effects were
observed only during hormone treatment. Various disorders of the autonomic
nervous system normalized during acupuncture. Based on our data, auricular
acupuncture seems to offer a valuable alternative therapy for female
infertility due to hormone disorders.