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Effects of acupuncture combined Chinese materia medica for tonifying shen and soothing gan on the anxiety and depression of patients with in vitro fertilization and embryo transplantation and on the treatment outcomes

Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23173245

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To assess the effects of acupuncture combined Chinese materia medica for tonifying shen and soothing gan (CMMTSSG) on the anxiety and depression of patients with in vitro fertilization and embryo transplantation (IVF-ET), and to observe the treatment outcomes.

METHODS:

Totally 97 IVF-ET patients were randomly assigned to two groups, the acupuncture combined CMMTSSG (group A, 51 cases) and the Western medicine treatment group (group B, 46 cases). The long protocol of IVF-ET in a mid luteal phase was performed in all patients. Patients in group A received acupuncture and CMMTSSG (erzhi tiangui granule and xiaoyao granule) during the process of ovarian hyperstimulation, while those in group B only received the routines of IVF-ET. The improvement of Shen deficiency Gan depression syndrome (SDGDS) between after and before treatment were observed in the two groups. The changes of self-rating anxiety scale (SAS) and Beck depression inventory (BDI) score were observed. The endometrial thickness, typing, and endometrial blood flow resistance index (RI) on the day of injecting HCG, the number of retrieved oocytes, the rate of high quality oocytes, the fertilization rate, the rate of high quality embryos, and the clinical pregnancy rate were respectively compared between the two groups.

RESULTS:

The scores of SDGDS, SAS, and BDI were improved more obviously in group A than in group B, showing statistical difference (P < 0.01). There was no statistical difference in the endometrial thickness on the day of injecting HCG between the two groups (P > 0.05). The proportion of type A endometrium was 74.5% (38/51 cases) in group A and 45.7% (21/46 cases) in group B, showing statistical difference between the two groups (P < 0.01). The RI was significantly lower in group A (0.48 +/- 0.03) than in group B on the day of injecting HCG (0.52 +/- 0.06, P < 0.01). There was no statistical difference in the number of retrieved oocytes and the fertilization rate between the two groups (P > 0.05). The rate of high quality oocyte, the rate of high quality embryos, and the clinical pregnancy rate were all improved more significantly in group A than in group B, showing statistical difference between the two groups (P < 0.05).

CONCLUSIONS:

Acupuncture combined CM-MTSSG could obviously alleviate unfavorable emotions as anxiety and depression in patients with IVF-ET, effectively improve the treatment outcomes. Its effects might be correlated with lowering the excitability of the sympathetic nervous system, elevating the quality of oocytes, and improving the endometrial receptivity.

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