Male fertility and acupuncture

It takes two to tango

“Acupuncture treatment is a simple, non-invasive method that can improve sperm quality.”
Dr Jian Pei
(Journal of) Fertility and Sterility

As seen in

It takes two to tango

The reproductive medicine has been focusing on women in the past decades. In fact, the role of urologists – male reproductive health specialist -has been declining.

Chances are your sperm test was administered by a gynaecologist. Nonetheless, male factor infertility affects 30% of couples.

Male infertility can be due to a number of factors. And the most common cause is a poor sperm quality.

We have an increasing number of men expressing the interest in restoring their fertility with acupuncture and lifestyle changes.

Addressing both male and female factors simultaneously is a sensible strategy.

How acupuncture helps male fertility

Acupuncture has been shown to help male infertility, by

A Norwegian study reported that approximately 20% of infertile men preferred an alternative treatment like acupuncture.

The effects on sperm

Professor Dieterle from Germany discovered that acupuncture can help men with severely reduced sperm motility. After a course of acupuncture leads to a significant improvement.

Acupuncture can improve spermatozoa structure and sperm quality.

Acupuncture on men improves IVF and ICSI outcomes

Sperm quality is important for fertilisation rates in IVF/ICSI cycles.

A team of researchers led by Dr Zhang investigated if acupuncture can help men with poor sperm quality.

Men received acupuncture twice a week over eight weeks period. As a result, IVF/ICSI fertilisation rates after acupuncture increased by almost 61%.

Stress harms sperm, acupuncture comes to rescue

Stress reduces testosterone levels. And yes, stress can affect sperm quality – this is a conclusion by researchers who looked into sperm quality of men attending IVF clinic in Italy.

Men with high levels of short- and long-term stress or anxiety ejaculated less semen. They had lower sperm concentration and counts. Furthermore, men with the highest anxiety levels were also more likely to have sperm that were deformed or less motile.

Can acupuncture help? Yes, absolutely. It is well known that acupuncture reduces anxiety and stress by increasing endogenous (feel good) opioids in your body. Reduced stress helps improve both male and female fertility.

Lifestyle matters

To name a few examples… Wearing loose boxers during the day and no underwear in bed may reduce the DNA damaged sperm by a quarter. Eating more carrots and tomatoes improves sperm motility and morphology. Sleep duration has been associated with sperm chromatin integrity. Quitting or reducing smoking and alcohol intake will make a difference.

During your initial session, we discuss your lifestyle and the changes which may benefit you.

IVF TESE and acupuncture

Acupuncture can be helpful for testicular sperm extraction (TESE) candidates. Studies show, that you can avoid TESE half of the time if you resource to acupuncture.

Azoospermic patients awaiting IVF, especially with a history of genital tract inflammation, are good candidates for this treatment.

Request a consultation or learn more about how acupuncture can help women undergoing IUI, IVF or ICSI treatment.

A word of warning on IVF ICSI, sperm quality and Autism

In a large study from Sweden, IVF-ICSI using surgically retrieved sperm was associated with a 4.6-fold increase in autism disorders and a 2.3-fold increase risk of intellectual disabilities relative to IVF without ICSI.

IVF-ICSI using ejaculated sperm also was associated with increased risk. A 47% increased risk of intellectual disabilities relative to IVF without ICSI using ejaculated sperm.

If you’re planning IVF, you should consider acupuncture and herbal medicines, lifestyle and diet changes, everything possible to improve the sperm to minimise the potential male fertility impact on your child.

Get in touch!

Fertility acupuncture is one of our fields of expertise. Contact us now to discuss how we can help you.