Dr (TCM) Attilio D'Alberto
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Unexplained Infertility

Around 20% of fertility cases are categorised as unexplained infertility. This is frustrating for many couples, as it doesn't help them understand and solve the problem. Instead, it leaves them lost and stressed.

In my experience, unexplained infertility in most patients tends to be a deficiency of some kind. The deficiency is often blood, yin, qi or yang (in that order of prevalence). Both blood and qi (energy) can be measured and therefore should be part of preliminary testing in fertility treatment. It's surprising that blood and qi are never picked up as being deficient in patients with unexplained infertility and is greatly overlooked by western medicine.

Blood and energy are pretty much the same in both Chinese and western medicines. Blood levels are routinely checked in western medicine, but their gauge as to what is a lack of blood or anaemia is narrow and more related to life threatening diseases. It does therefore not include infertility, which is more life optimising.

Qi is essentially energy and although it cannot be measured via a blood test, it can be measured through a questionnaire, similar in respect to how western medicine measures pain and depression levels. Yin and yang cannot be measured via a blood test but can be measured through a series of questions that highlight certain symptoms.

Most of the women that I see in my clinic who have been diagnosed with unexplained infertility are deficient of blood. This can be easily rectified through changes in diet, lifestyle, having regular acupuncture treatment and taking iron supplements,/

In minor blood deficient women who don't have too much energy expenditure, this is enough. However, in more chronic blood deficient women, i.e. those who work long hours or have a history of overwork, have exercised too much, or already have a child, Chinese herbs may need to be added to this treatment plan in order for them to replenish their blood levels to a point at which their fertility is improved.

This level at which fertility is improved varies from woman to woman and is important, as it lies at the crux of treatment. The body will absorb blood tonics given through an improved diet, supplements, acupuncture and Chinese herbs.

Unexplained infertility doesn't really exist. It's given this name because doctors can't find what's wrong. Often it's something simple which western medicine doesn't think of. You can read more about unexplained infertility and see what you can do to change it.

In Chinese medicine theory, unexplained infertility is often stress, or a deficiency of energy or blood. Acupuncture reduces stress and Chinese herbs and supplements boost energy and blood levels and can resolve other fertility issues.