An uncommon and poorly known condition, polycystic ovary syndrome or PCOS is a problem where a woman’s ovaries will produce more male sex hormones (androgens) than is typical. Women who have PCOS are likely to have irregular periods, anovulation, and difficulty both getting pregnant and carrying to term. There may also be a greater chance of insulin resistance and being overweight, and a host of other symptoms And further, the ovaries of women with PCOS are likely to develop small (typically benign) cysts – hence the name of the syndrome.
If you’re a woman suffering from PCOS, you probably had a long way to go to get your diagnosis. You may have seen a variety of endocrine & fertility specialists, or perhaps a therapist or two. And once you got a diagnosis, you may have been told that there’s not much that can be done apart from keeping on top of healthy habits. While developing healthy habits is certainly important, is there a role for alternative therapies? Luckily there is!
What acupuncture can do for PCOS
Acupuncture actually can help play a role in managing PCOS. We know that acupuncture can help regulate hormone output, and this is the fundamental issue with PCOS. Acupuncture also helps with many of the other symptoms common to PCOS sufferers: anxiety, depression, weight gain, pain, and acne.
Most of the current research looks at helping women with PCOS who are trying to conceive or have a child. Two systematic reviews of interest came out this past year. The first shows that acupuncture helps improve ovulation & menstruation rates, although the authors note that more research is still needed in this area. (Our clinical results match the studies. Acupuncture can help you regulate your period & improve ovulation, often over the course of a few months.) The second review shows that acupuncture helps pregnant women carry later into their pregnancies than they might otherwise be able to. For this one acupuncture is often used alongside IVF or other fertility therapies.
If you’re trying to get a handle on your symptoms, then acupuncture can be a big help to you. If you’re trying to conceive or having trouble with your pregnancy, acupuncture can definitely play a role. And if you’re really just starting out on your journey and trying to develop a healthier lifestyle overall, we can help with that too.
Interested to find out more? Schedule your consultation today to see how we might help you.