Have you and your partner been trying to conceive? Has the dream of adding a child to your family begun to place a strain on your relationship? Fertility is often thought of as a woman's only issue. However, there are both female and male factors. In this article, we'll look at male fertility factors and how acupuncture can be a helpful treatment option for turning your dream of becoming a father into a reality.
Male Infertility Statistics
There are many statistics on fertility. A couple is identified as having infertility issues if after 12 months of trying to conceive, the couple has not met with success through a sustained, confirmed pregnancy.
Here is a list of eight male statistics and statistics connected to couples:
After 12 months: 15% of couples experience challenges conceiving.
After 24 months: 10% of couples experience continues challenge conceiving
Couple age: 20-37% of couples under 30 are able to get pregnant within a 90-day period of trying without the use of any contraceptives.
Female factor: Represent 1/3 of infertility cases.
Male factor: Represent 1/3 of infertility cases.
Unknown factor: Represent 1/3 of infertility cases.
Zero sperm count: The percent of men who are are experiencing fertility challenges because of a zero sperm count is 10-15%.
Varicocele: This condition causes 40% of male infertility challenges.
3 Types of Male Infertility Treated By Acupuncture
Depending on the cause of infertility, acupuncture may help. Here are three types of of male infertility that can be treated with acupuncture:
Sperm count: How many sperm are counted when analyzed?
Motility: How quickly does the sperm move?
Morphology: What shape is the sperm?
How does Acupuncture Help with Male Fertility
Acupuncture does help with male fertility in many ways. It has been documented to have a positive impact on male fertility by reducing a man's anxiety, stress, and depression levels. This can have an impact on improving the male factor of conception.
There has been one study that did aim to show the effectiveness of acupuncture solving the challenge of low quality semen. What the study found was that, "acupuncture increased the percentage of sperm with rapid progression and sperm concentration".
Another study showed that acupuncture for male fertility difficulties has been known to improve and increase blood flow to the testicles. This, in turn, is what results in the higher quality of sperm because of the effects of acupuncture treatment.
We've read quite a few success stories on acupuncture for male fertility and we shared them here for you.
Success Story #1
We had great success using acupuncture for male fertility! Having been diagnosed with azoospermia several years ago, my husband had a biopsy and we discovered he had a zero sperm count. Our hope was to find some sperm for invitro fertilization.
Having been unsuccessful, I did research on alternatives to the invasive surgery we had done previously and ran across some research on acupuncture and male infertility, so we decided to try it.
I have to admit, it was very expensive, but not so much when compared to the cost of surgery, and honestly, at this point, we were willing to try anything. My husband had an acupuncture treatment once a week for the first month and then I began having treatments once a week as well. In the third month, we started going twice a week.
When we went in for a sperm analysis, I was hoping for a few sperm. But I couldn't believe the results--my husband had millions of sperm! We were able to move forward with IVF and now have a beautiful baby girl. Acupuncture changed our life and I highly recommend it.
5 Male Fertility Acupuncture Points
There are five male fertility acupuncture points:
Effect of acupuncture on azoospermic male Bidouee F ... (n.d.). Retrieved June 26, 2018, from http://www.sjkdt.org/text.asp?2011/22/5/1039/84564
How common is male infertility, and what are its causes? (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.nichd.nih.gov/health/topics/menshealth/conditioninfo/infertility#f7
Huang, D. M., Huang, G. Y., Lu, F. E., Stefan, D., Andreas, N., & Robert, G. (2011, May). Acupuncture for infertility: Is it an effective therapy? Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21611904
Jerng, U. M., Jo, J., Lee, S., Lee, J., & Kwon, O. (2014). The effectiveness and safety of acupuncture for poor semen quality in infertile males: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Retrieved June 21, 2018, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4236334/
Yao, D. F., & Mills, J. N. (2016). Male infertility: Lifestyle factors and holistic, complementary, and alternative therapies. Retrieved June 21, 2018, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4854092/