• Dr Agnes N Ryu

Metabolic Health & Fertility

  • Tel. 020 8241 7361

Herbal Medicine for Pregnancy

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Clinical Research shows that Chinese Herbal Medicine can increase pregnancy rates

K Ried’s team performed a systematic review in 2011 looking at the use of Chinese herbal medicine in infertility treatment. They identified eight randomised controlled trials (RCTs), 13 cohort studies, three case series, and six case studies involving 1851 women suffering from infertility. Meta-analysis of the RCTs suggested a 3.5 greater likelihood of achieving pregnancy with Chinese Herbal Medicine therapy over a four-month period compared with Western drug (clomiphene) therapy alone. They suggested that management of female infertility with Chinese Herbal Medicine could improve pregnancy rates two-fold. They also found that assessment of the quality of the menstrual cycle, integral to TCM diagnosis, appears to be fundamental to successful treatment of female infertility.

Reference:

Efficacy of Traditional Chinese Herbal Medicine in the management of female infertility: a systematic review.

The same group published an updated review of the same topic in 2015, where they collected data from 40 RCTs involving 4247 women suffering from infertility into a systematic review. In this study meta-analysis suggested a 1.74 higher probability of achieving pregnancy with CHM therapy than with Western therapy alone. In addition the authors concluded that fertility indicators such as ovulation rates, cervical mucus scores, biphasic basal body temperatures, and appropriate thickness of the endometrial linings are positively influenced by CHM therapy, indicating an ameliorating physiological effect for viable pregnancy.

Reference:

Chinese herbal medicine for female infertility: an updated meta-analysis.

There are many studies which aim to elucidate the mechanism of Chinese Herbal Medicine in the treatment of conditions frequently associated with infertility. The following are some of the underlying mechanisms associated with the efficacy of herbal medicine treatment.

  • Promotion of endometrial receptivity in the uterus
  • Stimulation of ovulated inhibition and treatment of ovary failure, and rise in hormonal levels
  • Relaxation of the uterus and prevention of spontaneous abortion
  • Promotion of the ovulation rate
  • Treatment for ovulation failure and insufficient stored ova
  • Reduction and treatment of miscarriage
  • Treatment of mycoplasma infection
  • Re-regulation of immunology disorder
  • Treatment of many abnormal physical and psychiatric symptoms, such as anxiety, stress, and insomnia

Yu Nan, Yang Jing, Yin T (2011) Extracts from a traditional Chinese herbal remedy (Zhuyun recipe) improve endometrial receptivity in mice with embryonic implantation dysfunction and ovulation stimulation. J Ethnopharmacol 137(1): 389-395.

X Gong, Lou J, Lu Q, Huang H, Jin Z (2015) Bu Shen HuoXue decoction restores endometrial leukemia-inhibitory factor but not Angiopoietin-2 expression, and improves uterine receptivity in the controlled ovarian stimulation rat model. Exp Ther Med 9(3): 751-756.

S Li, S Luo (2010) Study on Kidney Tonifying of CHM to the Rat Models with Ovulated inhibition, Chinese Journal of Basic Medicine in TCM 16 (7): 567-569.

X Teng, et al. (2016) Study on mechanism of regulation and control of Yulin formula of CHM to hormone level and histomorphology of SD rat model of premature ovary failure. Assay of Master degree of TCM gynaecology, BUCM, China.

S Luo (2003) Study of Mechanism on Zhuyun No3 in preventing and treating spontaneous abortion. Chinese Journal of integrated traditional and western medicine 23(7): 522-525.

H Zhao, S Luo, et al. (2008) Effects of Zhuyun No3 Serum TG-Bl in Abortion Rats of Kidney Deficiency and Luteum Inhibition Shanghai. Journal of TCM 42(12): 71-73.

H Du, Chang X, Du H, Zhang M, Zhang J, et al. (2013) Effect of soothing liver therapy on oocyte quality and growth differentiation factor-9 in patients undergoing in vitro fertilization and embryo transfer. J Tradit Chin Med 33(5): 597-602.