New research conducted by experts in China has found that an ancient Chinese therapy (acupuncture) could be more effective in boosting ovulation than fertility drugs.
According to the findings which have been published in Journal of Clinical Acupuncture, acupuncture increased the chance of pregnancy by 43.3 percent compared to other fertility drugs which had a 20 percent success rate.
The study looked at 60 women who were struggling to conceive due to hyperprolactinemia – a condition which causes higher than normal blood levels of prolactin.
The high hormone can affect a woman’s menstrual cycle and therefore ability to conceive.
Over a year, participants in the study were given 30 minute sessions of acupuncture each day of their cycle.
According to Dr Zhiguang Hu, who led the investigation at the Mawangdui Hospital in Hunan Province, China, those who received acupuncture saw their hormone levels balance after two weeks, while those who were given bromocriptine or bromocriptine plus clomiphene took four weeks.
And one of the main advantages that researchers found when it came to using acupuncture was that it did not produce a high ‘adverse effect rate’.
"One important mechanism responsible for the fertility treatment success with acupuncture is hormonal regulation,” Dr Hu said.
“And the study confirms that acupuncture normalises prolactin levels more rapidly than receiving fertility medications. Patients receiving acupuncture averaged a normalisation of prolactin levels within two weeks.
”Patients receiving bromocriptine, or bromocriptine plus clomiphene, experienced normalisation of prolactin levels within four weeks.”