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Acupunct Med. 2016 Oct;34(5):386-391. doi: 10.1136/acupmed-2015-011014. Epub 2016 May 13.

Electroacupuncture for reproductive hormone levels in patients with diminished ovarian reserve: a prospective observational study.

Author information

1
Acupuncture Department, Guang'anmen Hospital, China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences, Beijing, China.
2
Gynecology Department, Guang'anmen Hospital, China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences, Beijing, China.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Effective methods for the treatment of reproductive dysfunction are limited. Previous studies have reported that acupuncture can modulate female hormone levels, improve menstrual disorders, alleviate depression and improve pregnancy rates. However, studies of acupuncture for diminished ovarian reserve (DOR) are lacking.

OBJECTIVE:

To carry out a prospective observational study aimed at assessing the effect of EA on the reproductive hormone levels of patients with DOR seeking fertility support and consider its safety.

METHODS:

Eligible patients with DOR received EA for 12 weeks: five times a week for 4 weeks followed by three times a week for 8 weeks. The primary outcome was the change in mean follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) level at week 12. Mean luteinising hormone (LH) and serum oestradiol (E2) levels, FSH/LH ratios and symptom scale scores were simultaneously observed.

RESULTS:

Twenty-one patients with DOR were included in the final analysis. Mean FSH levels fell from 19.33±9.47 mIU/mL at baseline to 10.58±6.34 mIU/mL at week 12 and 11.25±6.68 mIU/mL at week 24. Change in mean FSH from baseline was -8.75±11.13 mIU/mL at week 12 (p=0.002) and -8.08±9.56 mIU/mL at week 24 (p=0.001). Mean E2 and LH levels, FSH/LH ratios and irritability scores were improved at weeks 12 and/or 24. Approximately 30% patients reported subjective increases in menstrual volume after treatment.

CONCLUSIONS:

EA may modulate reproductive hormone levels and the effects seem to persist for at least 12 weeks after treatment with no significant side effects. EA may improve the ovarian reserve of patients with DOR, though further research is needed.

TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER:

NCT02229604; Results.

KEYWORDS:

COMPLEMENTARY MEDICINE; GYNAECOLOGY

PMID:
27177929
PMCID:
PMC5099178
DOI:
10.1136/acupmed-2015-011014
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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