GV 20’s Role in In Vitro Fertilization and Frozen Embryo Transfer.
- Touro-COM Middletown, Middletown, NY.
Background: Unexplained infertility is failure to conceive after 1 year in couples with normal semen samples and no abnormalities. Acupuncture to certain points along a meridian can affect the hypothalamic-pituitary-axis (HPA) by affecting the sensory nerve fibers, blood vasculature, and autonomic nervous system. GV 20, a point at the vertex of the head, is commonly utilized in acupuncture for infertility. Engagement of the HPA axis via GV 20 stimulation should always be considered when treating a woman, with a history of ovarian dysfunction and subsequent infertility, undergoing in vitro fertilization (IVF). This point, due to its systemic effects, should be considered prior to undergoing frozen embryo transfer (FET). Case: A patient was diagnosed with unexplained infertility when she underwent IVF and FET procedures. GV 20 stimulation helped this patient by improving her mood and ameliorating her psychiatric symptoms via suspected engagement of the HPA axis. Results: As of this writing, the patient has had a relatively uneventful, successful pregnancy and is currently at 28 weeks’ gestation. The couple are happily expecting a baby boy. Conclusions: Practitioners should use GV 20 to address psychologic concerns, especially in patients seeking assistive reproductive technologies. The general sense of well-being induced by GV 20 stimulation involves engaging the HPA axis. More research on GV 20’s effect on regulation of hormonal imbalances, mood, anxiety, and depression via the HPA axis is warranted as is research on how GV 20 stimulation affects prolactin levels when treating hyperprolactinemia, and subsequently, dopamine utilization.