Help with IVF Cycle

by Ami
(New London, CT)

Hello Amelia,
I am currently going through IVF #2 --IVF #1 was in August 2012. Since the first one failed I have been seeing an acupuncturist weekly. I would have likely continued with acupuncture and not undergone another IVF if I didn't feel time was ticking...(I will turn 38 next month.)

I was taking herbs until I started the IVF protocol. The infertility concerns lie with my husband, he is 34, (who also is going to acupuncture weekly.) He has low morphology (4%) but his motility and counts are on the rise.

My acupuncturist didn't mention specific foods to eat except to eat "warmer" foods and keep my feet warm.

As far as why IVF #1 was not successful, the RE stated that my ovarian reserve is good, egg quality good, fertilization was good. I am wondering if you have any advice for food choices for fertility, whether I should have an acupuncture session prior to the transfer and post transfer (Is this done on the same day?)

I am also not drinking caffeine, alcohol, and doing daily meditation as well--which is different this time around.

Thank you your time,

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Help with IVF Cycle
by: Amelia Hirota, D.Ac.

Hi Ami,
I know that I'm getting back to you late, so I wonder how this IVF #2 went. Please let me know. It sounds like you're doing a lot of good stuff like not drinking caffeine and alcohol. I trust this is true for your husband, as well. I also think that the meditation is great. I really hope that these things were helpful this cycle.

I would be curious about your husbands actual sperm numbers. If his volume, count and motility are good, then the 4% morphology doesn't have to be a deal breaker. I've had couples with 5-6% morphology conceive naturally when both partners were following my program. Also, I don't consider 38 old in terms of conceiving naturally. There is hope if these IVF cycles don't work.

Please watch my diet and nutrition webinar for a complete guide to what to eat and what to avoid when trying to conceive. Food is very important when preparing your body for making a baby, as the nutrients that you absorb from food not only nourish your body, but also your reproductive system, your eggs and your husband's sperm.

In terms of acupuncture with IVF, it's more important to get regular weekly treatments in preparation for the IVF cycle. When I've had women come in only for IVF acupuncture before and after the transfer, few of these patients conceived and stayed pregnant. I attribute this to the fact that they basically didn't prepare their bodies for conception. They just added acupuncture at the last minute to their IVF cycles.

However, with my fertility patients that came in regularly for months prior to IVF, the vast majority of them conceived and stayed pregnant after their first IVF cycle. So, the fact that you and your husband are doing regular acupuncture in preparation for this next IVF cycle is very good.

If you want to do acupuncture in conjunction with the IVF procedure, I usually do a pre-retrieval treatment and a pre and post transfer treatment, if time and logistics make it smooth. Also, I do the treatments the day before or after the procedure, as I want my patients to rest on the days of the procedures. I hope this is helpful. Good luck Ami. Let me know how IVF #2 went.

Sending Babydust Your Way,
Amelia Hirota, D.Ac.

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