IVF, IUI, and Egg Freezing Support

Starting fertility treatments like IVF, IUI, or egg freezing can feel like a solitary and overwhelming experience, but working together, you won’t be alone. I'm here to offer support and understanding, guiding you through both the physical and emotional challenges of your fertility journey.

Acupuncture plays a valuable role in supporting fertility, especially for those undergoing Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ART), such as IVF, IUI, and Egg Freezing. Well-established research and my clinical experience have consistently shown improved outcomes with egg retrieval, fertilization, and healthy pregnancies. By addressing your unique constitution, we can balance hormones, improve blood flow to your reproductive organs, and ease stress. These combined effects can significantly boost the success of fertility treatments and increase your chances of conceiving.  Moreover, TCM emphasizes holistic approaches that address the underlying imbalances within the body, promoting overall wellness alongside targeted fertility support.


In the context of IVF, studies have indicated that acupuncture administered before and after embryo transfer may enhance implantation rates and increase the chances of successful pregnancy. Similarly, individuals undergoing IUI can benefit from acupuncture sessions aimed at improving ovarian function, promoting ovulation, and creating a receptive uterine environment for embryo implantation. Additionally, for those opting for egg freezing procedures, Chinese herbal medicine and acupuncture can help optimize egg quality and quantity while mitigating the side effects of hormonal stimulation.

In my experience, collaborative efforts with Western fertility specialists enable a synergistic approach that maximizes the potential for success while prioritizing the holistic health of patients undergoing reproductive treatments. I’m in regular communication and collaboration with reproductive endocrinologists and fertility clinics such as Generation Next, Cornell, CCRM, Neway, RMA, and Columbia.

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Preparing You for What's Next

When to get Started

Acupuncture treatment may commence at any time, but starting 3 months before any ART (assisted reproductive technology) cycle is the ideal. It takes 90 days for primordial follicles to develop in preparation for ovulating each month and within their journey the quality of these developing eggs can greatly benefit from positive influences. Our goal is to create a vibrant program to optimize egg health in the 3 month lead up. This involves arming you with a nutrient dense diet, quality supplements, the right forms of movement, regular acupuncture, customized herbal formulas, and a guide for cleaning up your home of endocrine disrupting chemicals. This plan also allows for ample time to deal with any apparent hormonal imbalances, which can greatly interfere with how you respond to the medicated process, as well as resolving painful periods, addressing gut health issues, sleep quality, stress management, and any other fine tuning your system may need. 

More about Holistic Treatment

Acupuncture focuses on increasing blood flow to the ovaries and uterus, facilitating increased nourishment and improving the reproductive environment. This lends to potentially enhanced egg development and health, and improved circulation in the uterine cavity for supporting implantation. With the great amount of emotional strain during the process of IUI, IVF, or egg freezing , acupuncture also serves to reduce stress and anxiety levels, and improve sleep, all of which may influence a more positive outcome. We discuss nutrition, lifestyle, exercise, and stress management to create a comprehensive plan of support for the cycle that carries well into pregnancy or beyond. All these factors provide an enriched pelvic environment, due to more nutrient influx from improved blood flow to the ovaries, and a robust system better able to respond when medications are introduced that will put your ovaries to work!

The Timing

During IUI

Weekly acupuncture treatment is recommended leading up to, along with one timed specifically within a day or two of the insemination. Depending on your protocol and whether medication is a component, we may discuss whether Chinese herbs are right for you during the process.

During IVF or Egg Freezing

A more frequent regiment of acupuncture is encouraged in order to facilitate the stimulation of the ovaries and support follicle growth. Sessions are scheduled twice weekly during the injections phase, with one timed for the day before egg retrieval. After retrieval, many women opt to continue care to help with recovering and reseting from the impacts of the cycle, and preparing for any next steps.

Embro Transfer

For embryo transfer, pre and post transfer treatments are then timed within 24 hours on either side of the transfer itself. For those doing a frozen embryo transfer on different month from retrieval, or using donor eggs, weekly acupuncture is also encouraged leading up to transfer day to prepare the uterine lining for implantation.

Common questions about IVF, IUI and Egg Freezing

How does acupuncture help with fertility treatments like IVF, IUI, and egg freezing ?

By customizing treatments to your specific needs, acupuncture can balance hormones, enhance blood flow to reproductive organs, and alleviate stress, ultimately improving the success rates of fertility procedures. Research and clinical experience consistently demonstrate enhanced outcomes in egg retrieval, fertilization, and healthy pregnancies with acupuncture. Collaborative efforts between acupuncture and Western fertility specialists create a holistic approach that maximizes success while prioritizing overall wellness throughout the fertility journey.

Is acupuncture safe during fertility treatments ?

When incorporated as part of a comprehensive approach to fertility care, acupuncture can be a safe and effective complement to conventional treatments. Numerous studies have shown that acupuncture is well-tolerated and does not pose significant risks when performed by qualified and experienced practitioners, so it's essential to ensure that your acupuncturist has specific expertise in fertility support and understands the unique needs of individuals undergoing reproductive treatments.

How many acupuncture sessions are needed and when should I start ?

The ideal timing for acupuncture sessions in preparation for assisted reproductive technology (ART) cycles is to begin weekly treatment in the 2-3 months before the planned cycle, and continued through the process. Starting early allows for addressing hormonal imbalances, improving response to medication, and enhancing overall well-being, which can significantly impact treatment outcomes. However, beginning acupuncture support at any time is very beneficial, and individualized plans can be tailored to suit specific needs and circumstances.

Is there a recommended protocol for acupuncture sessions leading up to embryo transfer or egg retrieval ?

My protocol for acupuncture sessions leading up to embryo transfer or egg retrieval typically involves scheduling specific intervals before and after these procedures to optimize outcomes. Beginning several weeks before ovarian stimulation, acupuncture works to prepare the body by addressing underlying imbalances, optimizing hormonal balance, and enhancing egg quality. Sessions continue throughout the stimulation phase to support follicle development and reduce stress. Prior to embryo transfer, acupuncture aids in relaxing the uterus and improving uterine receptivity, while post-transfer sessions support implantation and early pregnancy. Additional follow-up sessions offer ongoing support during the early stages of pregnancy. This comprehensive approach addresses both physical and emotional aspects of the fertility journey, ultimately maximizing the chances of success. 

Is there scientific evidence to support the effectiveness of acupuncture for IVF support ?

Scientific evidence increasingly supports the effectiveness of acupuncture for improving fertility outcomes, particularly for individuals undergoing assisted reproductive technologies (ART) like IVF and IUI. Research indicates that acupuncture may enhance fertility by improving blood flow to reproductive organs, regulating hormone levels, reducing stress, and optimizing the quality of eggs and sperm. Numerous studies, including systematic reviews and meta-analyses, have demonstrated that acupuncture may increase pregnancy rates and live birth rates for couples undergoing fertility treatments. This growing body of evidence underscores acupuncture’s potential as a valuable adjunct therapy for individuals seeking to enhance their fertility and improve their chances of conception.

Are there any lifestyle changes or dietary recommendations that should accompany acupuncture during fertility treatments ?

Dietary and lifestyle  recommendations aim to create a supportive strategy in conjunction with acupuncture and fertility treatments, optimizing the body's natural ability to conceive and sustain a healthy pregnancy, addressing underlying imbalances, and promoting overall well-being during the fertility journey.  With Eastern nutrition principles, my focus lies on nourishment through food rather than just restriction. This personalized approach not only enhances the effectiveness of acupuncture but also empowers individuals to cultivate a positive relationship with food and their bodies, fostering optimal reproductive health and well-being.