Traditional Chinese medicine can often establish a treatment protocol where Western medicine has none to offer other than donor-egg. TCM uses specific herbal formulas prescribed for a particular patient for a particular disorder, taking into consideration the whole patient as well as their pathology. The whole person is treated, not just their boundary to conception. What does the “whole person” mean? It means that if the patient has a bad marriage, has low libido, chronic headaches, arthritis, depression, anxiety, frustration, a history of surgeries, a history of psycho-emotional trauma, a job she hates, a dying mother, low self-esteem, a smoker, a drinker, a stress eater, etc., these things probably are contributing factors to her infertility.
How? Because the mind, spirit and body are inextricably connected. Not convinced? Ok, the why when you are really stressed do you get a headache or a stomach-ache. Why is it that when you are very depressed you have no energy? Why is it that when you pray you feel more empowered? Why is it that when you look better, you feel better, and when you feel better you have more energy, and when you have more energy you are less likely to get sick, and when you are not frequently sick you are not chronically depressed?
Because the mind, spirit and body are inextricably connected. This is why TCM doctors treat the whole person; only treating the disease is like treating a cancer patient with aspirin for their pain.
This is why the best case scenario in the treatment of reproductive disorders (as well as all disorders) is to integrate both methods of medical expertise. The TCM application will help the Western reproductive medical protocol succeed in a shorter period of time. Or TCM may be the difference between success and failure in the outcome. Remember, IVF has a 30% success rate which means conversely, it has a 70% failure rate.
Mike Berkley, L.Ac.,
Founder and Director, The Berkley Center for Reproductive Wellness