ohss-acupuncture-treatments

Treating Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome (OHSS) with Acupuncture

By now you would have learnt about Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome or OHSS, the symptoms, the risks and when it can occur in your IVF journey. In this article, we’re going to focus less on these details and more on what you can do to treat the symptoms, recover from all of the side effects and prepare your body for the next cycle.

 

Go beyond remedying one or two symptoms. Treat all of the side effects and prepare your body for the next IVF cycle.

Many women who undergo IVF and experience OHSS, face mild symptoms like bloating, abdominal swelling, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, weight gain and look for relief. From our experience in treating IVF patients, relieving the discomfort is the immediate priority but the main goals are to treat all side effects and make the patient a better responder to IVF medication as they continue their journey.

Through Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and Acupuncture treatments, patients can manage their OHSS associated symptoms and:

  • Reduce abdominal swelling and pain;
  • Ease nausea and vomiting;
  • Reduce fluid retention; and
  • Recover from the emotional roller coaster of both the mind and the body.

 

Preparing the mind is just as important as preparing the body. 

The journey from infertility to pregnancy is a mentally challenging one, regardless of whether it’s been a year or years in progress. Working on your psycho-emotional symptoms and mindset is just as important as working through OHSS symptoms and preparing your body for the next cycle of IVF.

From our experience at Sustain Health, we see that patients find acupuncture helpful during the acute stages in managing their symptoms but as well as calming their mind and body.

In short, acupuncture helps reduce the body’s response to stress and become less reactive to all kinds of stimuli.

 

How Acupuncture helps alleviate OHSS symptoms and assist with successful IVF

Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture are increasingly being prescribed in the Western Medicine world and adopted by patients seeking natural therapies. When it comes to helping a couple fall pregnant naturally or through IVF, a team of IVF specialists, Chinese medicine doctors and acupuncturists can work together to help patients achieve their goals sooner.

How does Acupuncture work?

Acupuncture started in China approximately over 3000 years ago and is a form of natural health care that takes a holistic approach to treat and prevent illness. 

The practise involves stimulating the body’s natural energy flow (called qi or “chi”)  with thread-like needles. The types of needles used and where the needles are inserted will depend on the acupuncturist and what he diagnoses as a patient’s target area. In the case of treating most fertility and mild OHSS cases, the needles are focused around the legs, lower back and lower abdomen. These treatments focus on increasing blood flow to the reproductive organs, relaxing the gut from the built-up of stress and balancing a patient’s endocrine system.

Through this therapy, IVF patients may find that they can reduce their intake of painkillers and opioid analgesia, persist through to the egg collections stage and avoid having to cancel.

How long does it take for Acupuncture to alleviate OHSS symptoms?

OHSS symptoms and the severity of it varies from patient to patient. At Sustain Health, we talk through your health and infertility history, understand the severity of symptoms or case and administer acupuncture within the first appointment. Typically a patient managing OHSS will have two to three appointments within the first week and start feeling the positive effects of acupuncture in this time. Each appointment usually lasts around an hour and involves resting with the small needles inserted for 20-30 minutes.

How long does it take to fall pregnant with Acupuncture through IVF?

With any natural therapy, it takes time, persistence and consistency. Especially, if the patient is committed to going beyond alleviating the pain and preparing their body and mind to be more responsive to IVF treatments.

Renowned acupuncturist, Dr Scott Ling, shares that the time it takes to fall pregnant really varies. In some cases, it can be within 3 to 6 IVF treatment cycles.

 

How much does it cost for acupuncture treatments?

Depending on the acupuncturist you see and their level of experience, their professional fee may range from $155 to $200 for the initial consultation and $115 to $140 for standard appointments thereafter. 

You can see what our professional fees are here.

Booking an initial consultation

You can book an initial consultation with your Sustain Health Practitioner of choice through our online booking form. 

If you would like additional information, please feel free to email reception@sustainhealth.com.au or call 1300 432 639 within our clinical hours. At Sustain Health, we offer after work appointments and Saturday appointments.

About Sustain Health

Sustain Health has a team of Senior Chinese Medicine Doctors and Acupuncturists whose clinical focus includes fertility and IVF. In our combined 30 years of practice, we have supported many couples, and specifically women, in helping them conceive.

About the Author Dr Scott Ling

Dr. Scott Ling is the Chief Chinese Medicine Practitioner and Acupuncturist and the founder of Sustain Health. He holds a PHD Doctorate Degree in Chinese medicine from Guangzhou University of Chinese Medicine. Dr Ling's extensive qualifications also include a Master of Reproductive Medicine (western medicine). Due to his unique medical background, Dr Ling’s approach stresses on the integration of Chinese and Western medicine to ensure patients get the greatest benefits from the best of both medical systems.