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Improving AMH and Fertility with TCM: Acupuncture and Herbs Show Promise

20 Mar 2024

By: Yi Ting Na

Basic terms you need to know and understand:

AMH and Fertility with TCM | Yi TCM

Anti-Müllerian hormone (AMH) is a marker (identified through blood tests) that helps indicate a female’s ovarian reserve. Diminished ovarian reserve (DOR) refers to a reduction in the follicles present in the ovaries, as indicated by a low AMH value and a decreased antral follicle count (AFC), which often results in poorer fertility outcomes. DOR can be caused by various factors such as ovarian surgeries and endometriosis. Currently, we are witnessing a trend of an increasing number of women being diagnosed with DOR.

Does TCM treatment help improve AMH?

We have observed patients whose AMH levels rose after undergoing TCM treatment. However, is this merely a chance occurrence, or is there scientific rationale behind TCM treatments aiding in AMH improvement? Should women with low AMH consider trying TCM treatments to enhance their levels?

A meta-analysis¹ encompassing 13 randomized controlled trials involving 787 patients with DOR revealed that acupuncture significantly reduces FSH levels, increases Antral Follicle Count (AFC), and boosts AMH levels (P<0.05). It further indicated that a high dose of acupuncture (≥10 acupuncture points) exhibits superior efficacy in enhancing these parameters compared to a low dose of acupuncture (<10 acupuncture points). Combining acupuncture with Chinese herbs also notably reduces FSH and FSH/LH ratio while elevating AFC.

This study suggests that TCM treatments such as acupuncture and TCM herbs effectively lower FSH levels observed in patients with diminished AMH. Additionally, these treatments contribute to increased follicle counts and AMH levels.

Another clinical trial demonstrated that electro-acupuncture (usually included therapy in our specialized acupuncture without additional charges) can enhance embryonic development and egg quality². A potential explanation for this clinically observed phenomenon is that acupuncture and TCM herbal treatment enhance blood circulation to the uterus and ovaries, thereby stimulating dormant follicles to mature. This, in turn, improves AMH levels, AFC, and egg quality, offering significant benefits to patients undergoing fertility treatments or attempting conception naturally, as well as those considering IUI and IVF.

While further research is warranted to fully understand how TCM treatments improve AMH, AFC, and egg quality, individuals embarking on their fertility journey might consider exploring these options. Consult with TCM physicians to learn more about these treatments and their suitability for your specific needs.

Do Physicians at Yi TCM have knowledge on AMH?

At Yi TCM, we have a profound interest in fertility concerns and have dedicated ourselves to extensive research and knowledge sharing regarding AMH and its relevance to reproductive health. Renowned for our empathetic handling of fertility cases, we collaborate closely with Western medical practitioners to address our patients’ AMH concerns. Through the application of acupuncture and Chinese traditional medicine (TCM) herbal remedies, we have successfully aided many patients in improving their AMH levels. However, it’s important to understand that these treatments require patience and commitment, as there are no instant or miraculous overnight solutions. Rest assured, our physicians will thoroughly assess your entire fertility health before recommending any course of treatment.

¹Lin G, Liu X, Cong C, Chen S, Xu L. Clinical efficacy of acupuncture for diminished ovarian reserve: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Front Endocrinol (Lausanne). 2023 Aug 2;14:1136121. doi: 10.3389/fendo.2023.1136121. PMID: 37600702; PMCID: PMC10433735.

²Xiang S, Xia M-F, Song J-Y, Liu D-Q, Lian F. Effect of electro-acupuncture on expression of IRS-1/PI3K/GLUT4 pathway in ovarian granulosa cells of infertile patients with polycystic ovary

 

syndrome-insulin resistance of phlegm-dampness syndromeChin J Integr Med (2021) 27(5):330–5. doi:  10.1007/s11655-020-3219-z