There have been a number of research studies undertaken in the west demonstrating the efficacy of acupuncture in promoting fertility for both males and females. Some of the studies have used the same points and others have used different acupuncture points. Patients then come into The Acupuncture Clinic – Hastings requesting that the “best” acupuncture be used to help promote fertility. Unfortunately there is no best acupuncture point. There are of course some acupuncture points that are more commonly used and some acupuncture points have been used for hundreds of years in fertility treatment. The best acupuncture point chosen actually comes down to the right diagnosis from the qualified practitioner who has come to a conclusion according to traditional Chinese medicine diagnosis. The next factor is the training of the practitioner. Have they been taught how to needle correctly and manipulate the energy of the meridian to maximize the acupuncture point’s influence.
Who is qualified to find the right acupuncture points to treat infertility in New Zealand?
The New Zealand Register of Acupuncturists Inc also now known as Acupuncture NZ, was established in 1977 and has over 500 qualified and experienced members. It is suggested that you ask the practitioner performing the acupuncture if they have done four years full training or only attended a weekend course in dry needling?
The ability to manipulate the needle properly, whether strongly or gently, comes down to the training of the practitioner.
However stronger manipulation of the needle or deeper insertion does not always mean it is better. Mr Alan Jansson, a registered acupuncturist in Queensland, specialises in traditional Japanese style acupuncture which uses very gentle and shallow needling methods. Mr Jansson says “One of the first and foremost aspects of good needle technique is the focus and intent of the practitioner. There is a quote from the classics that says the qi (energy) follows the thought and the true practitioner must always take this to heart“. He went onto explain, “This is why so many acupuncture research trials are flawed to begin with because the researchers are often not even acupuncturists, but just technicians and statisticians. If your heart is not with it, either will the treatment you give”
I, on the other hand use a quite strong needle technique. My training was under Professor Lou Bai Cen in Hangzhou China in 1984 who used very few needles but used them with very strong stimulation. Professor Cen also emphasized focus and intent of the practitioner as being even more important than the acupuncture point location.
Moxibustion on acupuncture points is also important.
In addition to the needling on the most appropriate acupuncture point to enhance fertility according the patients individual diagnosis, moxibustion may also be needed. Mr Alan Jansson says that “In the western society, too many cold and raw foods have been consumed long term which has led to cold blockage in the stomach. I have a hard job of explaining to female patients that having carrot juice and sprouts for breakfast is not productive for increasing the ability to conceive. A cold stomach leads to a cold uterus and hence I use a lot of moxibustion in my clinic to warm up their cold uterus“.
Alan Jannson regularly lectures around the world on the specialist style of Japanese acupuncture and he will be presenting in Christchurch in January 2015.