Reported April 17, 2002
Acupuncture for PCOS
PHILADELPHIA, Penn. (Ivanhoe Newswire) — Between 5 percent and 30 percent of women have characteristics of a condition called PCOS, or polycystic ovarian syndrome. The span is so large because the condition often goes undiagnosed or misdiagnosed because of its variety of symptoms. Patients often turn to hormonal drugs with many side effects. Now doctors say they may have a drug-free option.
For ten years — Grace and John Ecclestone were happy to just have each other. They tell Ivanhoe, “If John and I were fortunate to have a child that would be great. If we didn’t, that was okay, too.”
Since she was a teenager, Grace has battled polycystic ovarian syndrome — a hormonal imbalance that leads to weight gain, excessive hair growth, irregular menstrual cycles and difficulty getting pregnant.
“There is actually no specific treatment for [getting pregnant]. When a patient comes to you, she comes in for a particular complaint,” says OB/GYN and medical acupuncturist Abegael Lorico, M.D., of Temple University.
An ancient therapy may prove to be the answer for this still often-misunderstood condition. Dr. Lorico conducted a small study of acupuncture’s benefits. Her results were encouraging.
“If you define success as regulating the periods, I would say that’s five out of five,” she says.
Long time sufferer Tina Mahserejian joined the study. She says, “I was really skeptical. I was really low you know, ‘What can it do for me?'”
The answer was: A lot!
Mahserejian says, “My weight stabilized, I started losing a little bit of weight. Mentally I was more stable. I didn’t have as many headaches.”
One patient’s success even shocked Dr. Lorico.
Grace got pregnant!
Dr. Lorico says, “I did not believe it!”
Grace says, “I don’t think that I really grasped the importance for me of becoming a mom until I actually was pregnant. And then I said — Oh, wow, this is really great.”
Now the once quiet house for two is full of new life.
A larger Swedish study of 24 patients found 38 percent experienced a “good effect” from treatment. Dr. Lorico suggests you find an acupuncturist who is experienced in treating women with gynecological complications.
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