Welcome to my blog

Acupuncture specialist for Fertility, Facial rejuvenation, Pain relief.
Based at Kensington Central London.Qualified as a medical doctor in Western medicine over 20 years ago in China with a Medical degree from Beijing, China and a PhD degree from the UK. Many year research and clinical experiences

Doctor who is passionate about acupuncture

I love what I do, I am good at it and I am always there for my patients. If you come and see me, you will know why I am standing out.
This blog is to introduce latest development and research of acupuncture and offer a chance of awareness of more treatment options for your condition. The blog is for information purpose only.

About Me

My photo

My specialised areas include fertility for women and men, facial rejuvenation, acne, various pain conditions, chronic fatigue and hormone regulation with acupuncture treatment.

Practice contact for appointments and address

Kensington: for appointments (Fridays, Saturdays, Mondays and Thursdays) at Anamaya center Kensington please call at 02030110355 or email at info@anamaya.co.uk

Address: 1 Adam and Eve Mews, Kensington, London W8 6UG

2 min walk from High Street Kensington underground station

My background: I became a qualified medical doctor in Western medicine 20 years ago in China and was well trained in Western medicine together with Chinese medicine in the best Medical University in Beijing, China. Also I was trained with Dr Zheren Xuan--famous orthopedics expert and founder of soft tissue surgery in China. I am dedicated to treat patients with acupuncture and am recognized as one of the world leading acupuncture specialists.

I obtained a PhD degree in the University of Leeds in the UK.

I had post doctoral training and worked as a senior researcher in St George's hospital, London, UK.

I had frequently presented my research findings in the top international conferences in the field.

I have many publications including ebooks and articles.

I have many year clinical experiences. Over the years of practicing, I have developed unique treatment approaches for infertility, skin aging, acne, vulvodynia, neck pain, headache, migraine, shoulder pain, back pain and hot flushes etc to achieve best treatment results. My devotion and skills are highly praised by my patients. 


Thursday, 23 February 2017

Neck and shoulder tightness, acupuncture can help

Tight neck and shoulders associated with aching and discomfort in the related area is very common. The muscles can become tender and movement is limited. Tight muscles are often chronic and need to be treated. Tight muscles block blood circulation of the body and muscles don’t get enough nutrition and become weak and easily get further damage. Because of blocked energy supply, you will feel tired all the time. Poor posture is a common cause of tight neck and shoulders. This causes overuse some groups of muscles and causes micro injury to the muscles which become tight to protect themselves from further injury. Furthermore the tight neck and shoulders will make poor posture worse. It becomes a viscous circle. This needs to be treated, otherwise tight neck and shoulders would not resolve itself. It would become worse over the time. Stretching the muscles, applying heat or warm bath may help. Acupuncture is very effective to release the muscle tension, reduce the tightness, correct poor posture and improve blood circulation.

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Dr Maggie Ju acupuncture in Anamaya Kensington central London

Dr Maggie Ju’s acupuncture is available at Anamaya Kensington located at 1 Adam and Eve Mews, a historic street in central Kensington, a quiet street just off Kensington high street. http://anamaya.co.uk/practitioners/dr-maggie-ju/

About Adam and Eve Mews

Adam and Eve Mews is the former home of the Adam and Eve pub, which was often visited by playwright, Richard Brinsley Sheridan, and also a favourite of writer G.K. Chesterton. The name of Adam and Eve mews is associated with the old Adam and Eve pub, established before 1730 and surrounded by open countryside. The pub was rebuilt in 1823, meanwhile other building began to emerge west along Kensington High Street. The land was sold to builder William Willett who was a successful builder during the 19th and early 20th centuries, but is most remembered as the inventor of Daylight Saving Time for development in 1876. Building along Adam and Eve Mews, off the High Street, was completed by William Willett from 1880. Some buildings were used as stables for police horses. It was originally planned to name the street “Palace Stables”, but it later changed to “Adam and Eve Stables” and then “Adam and Eve Mews”.

About Anamaya

As soon as turning to the street Adam and Eve Mews, the noise from Kensington high street was left behind and instant tranquillity was felt. Anamaya is on the number one of the street. Anamaya is a modern health center. Its reception area is generous, stylish and modern. The therapy rooms are beautifully decorated which are shown on the website http://anamaya.co.uk/.

Anamaya is the Sanskrit word for health. It offers arrange of therapies including acupuncture, craniosacral and osteopathy, dietetics, energy healing, massage, pilates, psychotherapy, reflexology and mind, body, spirit.

About Dr Maggie Ju acupuncture

Dr Maggie Ju in Anamaya Kensington offers

Fertility acupuncture treatments:

Acupuncture boosts women's fertility by stimulating nerve endings and brain, as a result increases reproductive system blood flow, reduces inflammation, improves hormone balance, egg quality and reduces stress. Acupuncture also releases tube spasm and improves uterine lining. Please see Dr Maggie Ju’s book to learn more information about fertility and the ovaries and how acupuncture can help http://www.amazon.com/Know-Your-Ovary-Get-Pregnant-ebook/dp/B00P4K5AUQ;

https://www.amazon.com/Know-Fallopian-tubes-Uterus-Pregnant-ebook/dp/B01A3COPWI/

https://www.amazon.com/Get-pregnant-fast-naturally-Maggie-ebook/dp/B01C4AP57Q

https://www.amazon.com/Know-sperm-boost-male-fertility-ebook/dp/B00W04F1Z8


Acupuncture also boosts men's fertility: Acupuncture increases sperm counts, improves sperm quality and motility.

IVF acupuncture support:

IVF is one of the most successful infertility treatments and this treatment brings hope for pregnancy for many people. However, the majority of IVF cycles do not result in pregnancy. It is important to maximize the efficiency of the procedure. Many patients have turned to acupuncture treatments to increase the success rate of IVF. The first report was by Stener-Victorin et al. 15 years ago suggesting that acupuncture can increase the IVF clinical pregnancy rate (CPR). In recent years, there have been many randomized controlled trials (RCTs) evaluating acupuncture in IVF. There were more positive effects from acupuncture during IVF from these researches if treatment times are appropriate and the treatment course is enough. Acupuncture supports IVF by improving egg quality, relaxing uterus, increasing uterine receptivity and of course reducing stress.

Acupuncture is used to help many gynaecological conditions such as endometriosis, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), period pain, missing periods, high FSH, low AMH, primary ovarian insufficiency (Premature ovarian failure), dysfunctional irregular uterine bleeding, chronic pelvic inflammation, tube spasm, menopausal syndrome, and hot flushes.

Facial acupuncture: Recently, cosmetic acupuncture has been introduced as an intervention for skin rejuvenation. It is natural and health way to look and feel years younger. Why acupuncture can play a role in cosmetic purpose? Treatment benefits include elimination of some wrinkles and decrease in length and depth of others, decrease of facial edema, decrease of acne, improvement of facial muscle tone, improveing skin texture with tighter pores, and decrease of sagging around the eyes, cheeks, chin, and neck, lifting of droopy eyelids, clearing or fading of age spots. Skin becomes more delicate and fair and at the same time overall appearance and health enhanced.

https://www.amazon.com/Facial-Aging-Rejuvenation-Acupuncture-ebook/dp/B01E4H3RPO/

Acne treatment with acupuncture: Acne is a very common skin disease affecting a majority of the population at some point in their life. Acne is caused by bacteria infection, increased oil production and inflammation. Acupuncture is used to treat acne effectively.

https://www.amazon.com/Acne-treatment-acupuncture-Dr-Maggie-ebook/dp/B018GD8GYY

Acupuncture is used to relive pain including vulvodynia, neck pain, back pain and other pain conditions

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Vulvodynia-vulval-pain-your-mind-ebook/dp/B010R2596K/

Acupuncture stimulates nerve endings located in muscles and other tissues leading to production of endorphins and other neurohormonal factors. Acupuncture reduces inflammation by releasing vascular and immunomodulatory factors. Acupuncture increases local blood circulation and improves muscle stiffness, joint mobility and swelling. Also brain and spinal cord processing pain has been altered.

Acupuncture helps neurological conditions: such as multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's disease, peripheral neuropathy etc.

For an appointment with Dr Maggie Ju at Anamaya, please call Anamaya at 0203 011 0355. Dr Maggie Ju's personal webpage at Anamaya is here http://anamaya.co.uk/practitioners/dr-maggie-ju/

Mind body connection and acupuncture

Connection between mind and body has been discovered for centuries. In ancient time, it was believed that emotions were linked to disease and patients were advised to visit spas or seaside resorts when they were ill. Today it is widely accepted that there is a powerful mind-body connection through which emotional, mental, social, spiritual, and behavioral factors can directly affect our health. There is common sense ‘too much stress makes you sick' which means that there is a links between stress and health. There was a survey in the UK has shown that workers have high stress and little autonomy, have more than twice the risk of developing metabolic syndrome—a precursor of heart disease and diabetes. By measuring heart rate, and cortisol and adrenaline levels, researchers also found that stress affects the autonomic nervous system and neuroendocrine function. Other recent research showed that acute and chronic psychological stress, related to low socio-economic status, can increase the risk of heart attack by increasing circulating levels of platelet–leukocyte aggregates. It was also suggested that there was link between stress and othere conditions, such as infertility, chronic pain, fatigue, acne etc. Mind body therapies are helpful in managing these conditions by promoting relaxation. Acupuncture is one of the mind body therapy techniques that can relax body and mind to ease the symptoms of the conditions and improve psychological functioning and quality of life.

References
V Brower EMBO Rep (2006) 7:358-361

Thursday, 16 February 2017

Abdominal pain

Everyone at some point of their life will experience abdominal pain. Abdominal pain is one of the most complicated symptoms which can be caused by many factors. Most of the causes are not serious and the pain can be diagnosed and treated and prognosis is good. However abdominal pain can be a sign of very serious illness. If the abdominal pain is severe or recurrent and there are some other symptoms associated such as fever, inability to keep food down for more than 2 days, signs of dehydration, bloody stools, inability to pass stool and there is persistent nausea and vomiting, painful or unusually frequent urination, severe tenderness when you touch the abdomen, swelling of the abdomen, skin appears yellow, weight loss, pain is caused by injury to the abdomen etc, it is important to recognise the symptoms that are serious and see doctors to get it diagnosed. Be careful if you want to take over the counter pain killer. Pain killers sometimes can mask the severity of illness. Acupuncture is not recommended for severe acute abdominal pain.

Chronic abdominal pain may be intermittent, or episodic, meaning it may come and go. This type of pain may be present for weeks to months, or even years. Acupuncture can help with some chronic abdominal pain such as indigestion, inflammatory bowel diseases or muscular pain, benign ovarian cysts, pain with frequent urination etc.

Sunday, 12 February 2017

Fertility acupuncture for women and men

Acupuncture is used to treat infertility for women and men

Infertility is a disorder of reproductive system and it is when a couple failed to achieve a clinical pregnancy after 12 months or more of regular unprotected sex. Getting pregnant for some couples is natural, but for others it becomes difficult. Due to delayed child bearing age, environmental changes, and other reasons, one in seven couples have difficulty to conceive in the UK. After years of trying and no cause found, they could be put on IVF treatment straight away. In 2011, 48,147 women had a total of 61726 cycles of IVF or ICSI in the UK. Is there any other less invasive treatment available to help these couples to conceive?

Acupuncture is an alternative way to treat couples with infertility. Acupuncture is called ancient art. The use of acupuncture treatment in couples seeking fertility care is dramatically increased in last decades. A survey in the US has shown that one in five couples with infertility have tried acupuncture over 18 months of observation period. In the UK treatment for infertility with acupuncture increased fivefold in 10 years time. In Switzerland, Germany and Austria, one third of the fertility centres offer acupuncture treatments. If you are seeking IVF treatment for your fertility, acupuncture treatment as an adjunct treatment helps you to achieve best IVF success rate.

Fertility acupuncture, how does it work?

Is there scientific ground for the application of acupuncture on infertility treatment? Or is it only based on ancient theory? Or is it like some people thinks: acupuncture will work, if I believe it. As a matter of fact, there were many research data available to support this application. Since 1990s, much research has been done in animal experiments and clinical trials. Based on recent research evidences, it is suggested that for women acupuncture mediates endogenous opioid peptides in the central nervous system affecting fertility hormone balance; it increases uterine artery blood flow; it reduces inflammation; and it reduces stress which affects fertility hormone balance. Acupuncture also relaxes fallopian tubes. As a result, it could help improving egg production and egg quality and improving uterine receptivity and embryo implantation. Consequently reproductive health is improved and there is better chance to get pregnant. Acupuncture also helps improving men’s fertility. Research data on this aspect start emerging and suggested that acupuncture can increase sperm counts and improve sperm quality by improving testicular blood flow and reducing inflammation.

If you are interested in TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) idea, any blockage of Qi in the body will cause illness in TCM theory. Acupuncture acts at the specific acupuncture points in the meridians and clears off the blockage and makes Qi flowing freely in the body, as a result the organs will function well again. This improves your fertility as well as your overall health.

Acupuncture helps your fertility return after stop contraception methods

Women are fighting not to get pregnant and then fighting to get pregnant. When you start using contraception methods do you ever think about that your fertility will return when you stop? What is the chance to get pregnant, if you want to? A research has shown that women who stopped using a barrier method to achieve a planned pregnancy conceived most quickly: 54% were delivered after one year vs 39% of intrauterine device and 32% of oral contraceptive users. There was no association between fertility and duration of oral contraceptive use: However, short term intrauterine device users (< 42 months) showed a fertility pattern more favourable than seen in those discontinuing oral contraceptives, with increasing duration of intrauterine device use being associated with decreasing fertility. The fertility of women who had used the intrauterine device for 78 + months was the most impaired (28% were delivered by 12 months vs 46% of short term users). What is the chance to get pregnant, if you don’t have fertility problem? 92% will get pregnant during one year at ages 19-26 and 82% will get pregnant during one year at ages 35-39.

Do you know that acupuncture improves ovarian and uterine blood circulation and helps with your return of fertility, after you stop discontinuing contraception methods?

Stress affects fertility in both female and male and acupuncture reduces infertility related stress

Psychological stress is strongly associated with infertility. Infertility itself is stressful, due to the pressures, testing, diagnosis, treatments, failures, endless waitings and associated economic costs. There is an association between stress and infertility. Infertility causes stress and stress (both acute and chronic) may cause infertility. Stress can increase after diagnosis of infertility, follow-up appointments, and failed IVF treatments. Coping with various life styles also affects fertility.

Psychological stress affects 30% of women who attend infertility clinics, possibly due in part to infertility diagnosis and treatments. Women with infertility experience emotional stress. They tend to keep things to themselves and delay starting the treatments because of a desire to conceive naturally. This does not happen and makes them very stressed which turn to have negative impact to their fertility. There is a link between infertility and psychological distress. Greil et al studied the variation of fertility specific distress (FSD) associated with different types of infertility. They found that women with infertility have intention to have a child and seek treatment have higher levels of FSD than those women without intention to have a child and don’t seek treatment. Women with primary infertility (They have no prior pregnancy) have higher level of FSD than those women with secondary infertility (They have had at least once prior pregnancy with or without live birth. Older women with infertility tend to have higher distress level than younger women. General distress doesn’t vary between different types of infertility. A study of 430 couples on association between stress and conception showed that decreased conception occurred in those most stressed women. Women received treatment showed less stress and more hopeful. Fertilization of oocytes also decreased when stress increased. Stress acts through different mechanisms, not only by inhibiting the HPA axis but also by altering the concentration of fertility hormones (FSH, GnRH and LH) as well as other substances such as cortisol, opioids and melatonin. It alters the follicular levels of glucocorticoid hormones. The blood flow in the fallopian tubes could be reduced.

Males who experienced more than two stressful life events before undergoing infertility treatment were more likely to be classified below WHO standards for sperm concentration, motility, and morphology. Stress such as a job, life events, and even social strain were seen to have a significant impact on sperm density, total sperm counts, forward motility and morphology. Semen parameters may potentially be linked to stress. Actively coping with stress, such as being assertive or confrontational, may negatively impact fertility by increasing adrenergic activation, leading to more vasoconstriction in the testes. This vasoconstriction results in lower testosterone levels and decreased sperm production. Stress and depression are linked to reduce testosterone and luteinizing hormone (LH) pulsing, disrupt gonadal function, and ultimately reduce spermatogenesis and sperm parameters.

Very recently there was a study about stress on male fertility. This study evaluated the effect of psychological stress on male fertility hormones and seminal quality in male partner of infertile couples. Seventy male partners of infertile couples were evaluated for level of psychological stress using Hospital Anxiety and Depression Score (HADS) questionnaire, serum total testosterone, luteinising hormone (LH) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) by electrochemiluminescence assay and serum GnRH by ELISA. Seminal analysis was performed. 27% of them had HADS anxiety and depression score ≥8 which was abnormal HADS score showing stress condition. The persons having abnormal HADS had lower serum total testosterone, higher serum FSH and LH than those of persons having normal HADS. Serum total testosterone correlated negatively with HADS. Sperm count, motility and morphologically normal spermatozoa were lower in persons having abnormal HADS. Abnormal sperm motility and morphology were related to lower testosterone and higher LH and FSH levels. This study suggested that psychological stress affects male fertility and sperm quantity and quality.

Stress is also accompanied with fertility treatment. Before start of treatment such as IVF, fear of failure makes women stressed. Unsuccessful treatment raised stress level, while success treatment makes negative emotion disappeared. Studies found that high stress level reduced IVF success rate and live birth rate. Higher stress level during egg collection and embryo transfer was found in women failed IVF cycles than those who achieved pregnancy in IVF cycles. As mentioned above stress affects women’s fertility. Stress affects the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis (HPA) altering hormones including CRH, ATCH and cortisol production. These hormones also mediate hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadotropic axis (PG) which is an axis regulating sexual hormone secretion. As a result follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH) level decreased which affects fertility. Coyle M and Smith C conducted a survey to study the health status for women undergoing ART and examined the relationship between health status, traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) and Western medicine diagnosis underlying the cause for their infertility. Women with infertility undergoing ART were recruited and health was checked by TCM and western medicine questionnaire. They found that mental health status not physical function for these women was lower than that for general population. For TCM diagnosis, Qi and blood stagnation was common. And these women tend to have low score in the health questionnaire.

Stress management and stress reduction should be an important part of the infertility management. Lower stress levels improves female and male natural fertility and lower stress levels result in better fertility treatment outcome. Acupuncture is a useful treatment for reducing fertility related stress in female and male.

In vitro fertilisation (IVF) provides great chance for those couples who have difficulty to conceive. However IVF does not always produce pregnancy, actually the success rate is not high. It can be physically and emotionally challenging. Isoyama et al studied the effect of acupuncture on symptoms of anxiety in women undergoing IVF. 43patients participated in the study. 22 patients were in acupuncture group while 21 patients were in the control group. The anxiety level of each patient was analysed before and after treatment. Four weekly sessions were performed. Acupuncture points including HT7, PC6, CV17, GV20 and Yingtang were used for the needling. Their result showed that after 4 week treatment the anxiety score for acupuncture group was significantly lower than for the control group. This indicated that acupuncture can reduce anxiety symptoms in women undergoing IVF.

There is perceived stress on the day of embryo transfer (ET). Balk J et al in University of Pittsburgh studied effect of acupuncture on perceived stress and pregnancy rate on the day of ET. In this study, 57 patients with infertility and undergoing IVF or IVF/ISI were involved. These patients were undergoing ET with or without acupuncture as part of their standard clinical care. The result showed that women who received acupuncture treatment achieved 64.7% pregnancy rate while those who didn’t receive acupuncture treatment had 42.5% pregnancy rate. Women with acupuncture had lower stress score both pre-ET and post-ET compared to those without acupuncture. Women with lower stress score had higher pregnancy rate. They concluded that acupuncture reduced stress both before and after ET and it is the possible reason for improving pregnancy rate. Lower perceived stress on the ET may improve pregnancy rate.

Smith CA et al studied the effect of acupuncture on psychological distress for women with infertility. They run a pilot randomized controlled trial to investigate effectiveness of acupuncture for reducing infertility related stress. They found that 6 sessions over 8 weeks of acupuncture could reduce infertility related stress. Women in acupuncture group have less social and relationship concerns. They have improved self efficacy and less anxiety compared to waiting-list control group. Women described the experience and impact of acupuncture as positive relating to a sense of relaxation and time out, the engagement with the practitioner, and an intervention that had very few negative side-effects. Changes were also perceived after treatment with women describing a physical and psychologic sense of relaxation and calmness, and a changed perspective in relation to coping. This suggested that acupuncture may be a useful intervention to assist with the reduction of infertility-related stress.

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is characteristic of polycystic ovaries, hyperandrognism, irregular menstrual cycles, and abnormal metabolism including insulin resistance and obesity. PCOS increases risk of depression and anxiety and negatively affects health-related quality of life. Life style change on diet and exercise is essential and proved that this decreased depression and improved quality of life. E Stener-Victorin et al studied the effect of acupuncture and exercises on depression, anxiety and impaired quality of life in women with PCOS. 72 women with PCOS were recruited in the study. 28 women were offered acupuncture and 29 women were offered physical exercise and 15 women were assigned with no intervention. The treatments were lasted for 16 weeks for different interventions. Acupuncture was given twice a week for 2 weeks, once a week for 6 weeks and once every other week for 8 weeks. Total 14 treatments over 16 weeks were offered. Physical exercise program included regular exercise, such as walking, cycling or any other aerobic exercise at a self-selected pace. The frequency of exercise was at least 30 min and at least 3 times a week. This lasted 16 weeks. The assessment was at the end of 16 week treatment and 16 week follow-up after the last treatment. The results showed that depression and anxiety scores were reduced at the end of the treatment and the follow-up in the acupuncture group; the quality of life such as physical, energy/vitality, general health perception and the mental component was also improved in the acupuncture group. The quality of life such as general health perception, physical functioning and emotion was improved in exercises group.

References

Doll H et al BJOG (2001) 108:304-14

http://www.nhs.uk/chq/Pages/2295.aspx?CategoryID=54

Campagne Hum Reprod (2006) 1651-8

Smith et al J Altern Complement Med (2011) 17:923-30

Bhongade MB et al Andrologia (2014) 10.111and 12268

Sharma R et al Reprod Bio Endocrinol (2013) 11:66

Greil AL et al Hum Reprod. (2011) 26:2101-12

Balk J et al Complement Ther Clin Pract (2010) 16:154-7

Isoyama D et al Acupunct Med (2012) 30:85-8

Coyle M, Smith C Acupunct Med (2005) 23:62-9

E Stener-Victorin et al BMC Complement Altern Med (2013) 13:131

Thursday, 9 February 2017

Acupuncture improves uterine receptivity and helps implantation

When an egg is fertilised by a sperm, an embryo is formed and developing. At the same time, there are also changes in the uterus to prepare the arrival of the embryo. When an embryo arrives at the uterus, it will implant into uterine wall. A successful implantation depends on the synchronous development of both the endometrium and embryo. Uterine inner lining gets thicker, uterine smooth muscles are relaxed after ovulation. There is also communication between the uterine cells and the embryo to get the best time of implantation. Delayed implantation time will lead to implantation failure or miscarriage. During the development of uterine inner lining uterine blood circulation is the key factor to get ready for implantation. After embryo implanted, the embryo initially takes nutrients and oxygen from maternal blood circulation system and removes the waste via maternal blood circulation system. Good uterine blood circulation is essential for early stage of embryo development. To improve uterine blood circulation, acupuncture is the best candidate. Since a decade ago, acupuncture was suggested that it increases uterine blood flow. This will help embryo implantation and embryo development in the uterus.

Acupuncture improves uterine receptivity

If an egg is fertilised, it will be transported to the uterus and it will be implanted into uterine endometrium. Within the uterus, the foetus develops during pregnancy. Endometrium is the inner lining of uterus. It goes cyclic changes responding to ovarian hormone oestrogen and progesterone levels and sheds off each month with new endometrial lining replaced, if the egg is not fertilised. If pregnancy occurs, the endometrium will retain. After ovulation, the uterine endometrium becomes thicker to prepare for embryo implantation. If endometrium is not thick enough (less than 6 cm), implantation does not occur. If the thickness of endometrium is greater than 12 cm, there were three times more chances to get pregnant. To get embryo implanted, there must be a receptive uterus. Ovarian hormones oestrogen and progesterone are involved in regulating uterine receptivity. Uterine smooth muscles tend to contract especially at low progesterone level. Increased progesterone level makes uterus more relaxed. The thickness of endometrium and contractility of uterine smooth muscles are the key factors for the uterus becomes receptive.

Age and uterine receptivity

Women’s fertility is declining with advanced age which is attributed to declining of egg quality. A significant low success rate in IVF is an example. Success rate could be 48.8% for women younger than 30 years old while in comparison to 13.6% in women with 42 years old. Embryo implantation rates also decline in a linear fashion, from 29% in women younger than 34 years to approximately 5% at age 42. Apart from egg quality what other factors contribute to this change? This could be because of poor uterine receptivity in women with advanced age. This was suggested that in the case of egg donation, there was also low pregnancy rate in women with increased age.

Conditions of the uterus that affect uterine receptivity

Luteal phase deficiency (LPD) is a condition in which there is either no enough progesterone production or poor endometrial response. This is a major cause of infertility and recurrent pregnancy loss. In luteal phase defect, there is no enough progesterone produced which shows either low progesterone or too much fluctuation of progesterone levels. Or the uterine endometrium does not respond well to the progesterone stimulation because of lack of progesterone receptors or lack of cell surface adhesive proteins. There is poor endometrial development or delayed endometrial development, as a consequence, uterine receptivity is poor and the embryo loses its chance to implant.

Endometriosis

Uterine endometrial tissues grow outside of uterus. Women with endometriosis were found to have decreased fertility. Poor egg development and poor egg quality, impaired fertilization lower the embryo ability to implant. Also failing to respond to progesterone well makes their uterine endometrium less receptive.

Hydrosalpinx

Hydrosalpinx is distally blocked, dilated, fluid-filled fallopian tube caused by infectious diseases. Women with haydrosalpinx have difficulty to get pregnant. Tube blockage is not the only factor that is contributed to the cause. Women with hydrosalpinx have lower implantation, pregnancy and delivery rates and a higher incidence of spontaneous miscarriage after IVF–embryo transfer compared with women with tubal infertility of other causes. The inflammation of the tubes could spread to the uterus and make inflammatory environment in the uterus.

Uterine fibroids

Uterine fibroids are the most common uterine benign tumours in women of reproductive age. They can distort the uterine cavity or obstruct the fallopian tubes or cervical canal affecting women’s fertility. They may also change uterine receptivity and cause infertility.

Endometrial polyp

Endometrial polyps are benign, localized overgrowths of endometrium. It may affect infertility by mechanically disrupting the transport of sperm and embryo and making endometrium not responding to progesterone.

Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS)

PCOS is a common endocrinological disorder in women of reproductive age. Infertility associated with PCOS is mainly because there is no ovulation or less frequent ovulation. When ovulation was introduced by drugs in women with PCOS, implantation rates are lower than fertile controls and early pregnancy loss rates are increased which suggested that implantation failure is also contributing to the causes. The hormone imbalance in women with PCOS makes the endometrium less receptive.

Endometritis

Chronic endometritis causes prolonger inflammation in endometrium and affects endometrial receptivity which is associated with infertility and implantation failure.

Acupuncture can help uterine receptivity by regulating hormone balance, increasing uterine blood flow, improving uterine lining and relaxing the uterine smooth muscles. Whether you like to get pregnant naturally or via IVF, acupuncture can help your uterine receptivity to increase your chance to get pregnant and stay in pregnancy.

Acupuncture helps, if your abdomen is bloated

Bloating is a common symptom in digestive system. Most people have experienced this symptom, when the abdomen is stretched, puffy and uncomfortable. The common cause is constipation which is caused by too little fluids and fibers and lack of exercises. Food allergy and intolerance can be caused excess wind production causing bloating. Inflammation in digestive system such as irritable bowel syndrome can lead to bloating. Pain conditions such as low back pain, hip pain can accompany bloating because of alteration of the nerve activities. Acupuncture can help reduce bloating and its associated symptoms.

Tuesday, 7 February 2017

How long does it take for you to get rid of the pain?

Pain and burning in the affected area, decreased strength and flexibility, and pain caused by everyday activities are very common. This is often caused by tendinopathy-tendon injury.

Tendon is a tough band of fibrous connective tissue that usually connects muscle to bone. It is responsible to transmit muscle force to the bone. A healthy tendon is up to twice as strong as the muscle, making the body of the tendon unlikely to tear before the muscle unless the tendon has already been weakened by degenerative changes. The effects of ageing, wear and tear, genetic pre-disposition and inflammation are known factors contributing to tendon injuries. Injured tendon can cause pain, loss of limb function and prevent exercise and activities of daily living. Injured tendons heal by fibrotic repair and are highly prone to re-injury.

Tendons consist of collagens, proteoglycans, glycoproteins, water and cells. It takes over 100 days to make new collagen.

The healing time for injured tendon varies depending on whether treatment starts with early presentation or chronic presentation. Healing time for acute injury can be a few days to 6 weeks. Treatment at an early stage can be as brief as 6–10 weeks. Once it becomes chronic the treatment can take 3–6 months. The effective treatment might take up to 9 months when it is chronic. Knowing these timelines is part of creating an effective treatment plan.

Acupuncture helps release the pain.

Thursday, 2 February 2017

Frequent getting cold, acupuncture can help

Get cold or flu very often, though it is minor cold, but the cold keeps coming back and this makes one tired. Some people have this symptom, but they don’t think this is a problem and ignores it. Some people change their diets and take supplements which could work for some people, but not the others. Actually frequent getting cold or flu is a sign of weakened immune system. This is a problem that needs to be dealt with. When virus attacks the body, the weakened immune system cannot get rid of the virus and the symptoms of cold or flu occur. Acupuncture can strengthen immune function and improve the symptoms.

Facial acupuncture helps you to get rid of stress and anxiety

Stress makes you tense and aching

Stress is the feeling of being under too much mental, emotional or physical pressure. Many of life’s demands can cause stress, particularly work, relationships and money problems. Health problems also cause stress such as infertility, chronic pain. Pressure turns into stress and anxiety when you feel unable to cope. People have different ways of reacting to stress, so a situation that feels stressful to one person may be motivating to someone else.

Stress causes a surge of hormones in your body. These stress hormones are released to enable you to deal with pressures or threats. Once the pressure or threat has passed, your stress hormone levels will usually return to normal. However, if you're constantly under stress, these hormones will remain in your body, leading to the symptoms of stress.

The symptoms of stress include following aspects:

Emotional: You may feel easily agitated, frustrated, moody and overwhelmed. You may also feel lost control and having difficulty of relaxing and calming your mind and feeling bad about yourself (low self-esteem), lonely, worthless, and depressed.

Physical: You may feel lack of energy, always tired, have headaches, upset stomach, diarrhea, constipation and nausea, aching, pain and muscle tension, chest pain and rapid heartbeat, insomnia, loss of libido. You may have frequent colds and infections. You may also have nervousness, shaking, hearing problem, cold or sweaty hands and feet, dry mouth and difficulty swallowing, clenched jaw and grinding teeth.

Cognitive: You feel become constant worrying, having racing thoughts, poor memory and disorganization, lack of concentration, poor judgment and being pessimistic.

Behavioural: You may find your appetite changed—either not eating or eating too much, avoiding taking responsibilities, or increased use of alcohol, drugs, or cigarettes; showing more nervous behaviours, such as biting nails, fidgeting, and pacing.

Everyone may have a little stress every now and then which is not something to be concerned about. If one is constantly under stress, it becomes chronic. This can make your existing conditions worse or cause new health problems mentally or physically such as depression, anxiety and personality disorders; chronic fatigue, cardiovascular disease sexual dysfunction, skin problem such as acne eczema, hair loss, IBS etc.

Stress can trigger muscle tension with pain. When stressed, the body produces hormones that increase muscle tension and pain sensitivity. This can be present in a few spots.

The head

When stress strikes, it can cause tension headache. A tension-type headache is the most common type of headache and triggered by stress. It may feel like a constant ache that affects both or one side of the head. One may also feel the neck muscle tighten and feeling of pressure behind the eyes. Tension headaches are normally caused by muscle contractions in the face, neck and scalp triggered by heightened emotions, tension or stress. Pain system is sensitized resulting increased muscle tenderness and headache.

The neck and shoulder

When stress strikes, neck and shoulder can be very tense and painful and the tension and pain can radiate to the arms.

The stomach

When stress strikes, you can have abdominal cramps. You may also suffer from diarrhea and/or constipation.

The face and jaw

When stress strike, jaw muscles can be painfully tight and tender, pain is worse when chewing.

What does stress do to your face?

Prolonged both emotional and physical stress can affect your face from the skin to the contour. Stress causes facial muscles tension which wrinkles the skin and makes the skin sagging. Also the tension blocks facial blood circulation and makes the skin dry and pale. Tensed muscles drag the face down and make one look old and tired. Mind and face are connected via nerves system. Acupuncture is a good way to help you relax and solve the existing health problems at the same time. Particularly facial acupuncture can relax facial muscles and also relax the mind and take the stress away from the brain and the body.

Wednesday, 1 February 2017

Hay fever and acupuncture

Hay fever is a common allergic condition that affects up to one in five people at some point in their life. The common allergen is pollen. When these tiny particles come into contact with the cells that line your mouth, nose, eyes and throat, they irritate them and trigger an allergic reaction. This is caused by overreacting of the immune system which releases chemical substances causing all the symptoms such as itching eyes and a running nose. Symptoms of hay fever vary depending on the severity including frequent sneezing, runny or blocked nose, itchy, red or watery eyes, an itchy throat, mouth, nose and ears, coughing, headache, tiredness etc. Antihistamine and steroids are commonly used to treat hay fever.

Do you know that acupuncture can help improve immune function to treat and prevent hay fever?

Spotting and pregnancy

Women have periods every months normally. They should not have vaginal bleeding between the periods, but many women experience spotting (light vaginal bleeding) between their periods sometimes. This is considered not normal. If you have difficulty to get pregnant and you have persistent spotting every month, this could be the problem. You need to see a doctor to get it checked out. One of the common causes of spotting is hormone imbalance. Eostrogen and progesterone levels drop causing uterine lining breaking down which leads to spotting. Acupuncture can help restore hormone balance and stop spotting and help you to get pregnant.