Women’s Health

Acupuncture for Women's Health

Acupuncture for Women's Health

For thousands of years Chinese medicine has cared about the physical and emotional health symptoms of women throughout all stages of their lives.

Women can experience a wide range of symptoms related to their menstruation including irregular cycles, period pain and endometriosis, pre-menstrual tension and menopausal syndrome which can greatly affect their quality of life each month.

Any unusually late periods or absence of menstruation (amenorrhoea) should be investigated for possible pregnancy or other medical causes such as PCOS.

What Does The Research Say?

The following insights are obtained from scientific studies, systematic reviews and analysis of clinical trials investigating the efficacy of Acupuncture for Women's Health.

Scientific References

Browse our collection of scientific research on Acupuncture for Women's Health. It includes recent and reputable papers published by peer-reviewed journals within the last 10 years.

Medicine

2021, Jun 4

Efficacy and safety of acupuncture for urinary retention after hysterectomy
Medicine

There is insufficient evidence that acupuncture can increase the patient's maximal flow rate (MFR), bladder function recovery rate (BR), and urinary tract infection rate (UIR). However, acupuncture can effectively improve the post voided residual urine (PVR), maximal cystometric capacity, and bladder capacity for first voiding desire values of patients with urinary retention after hysterectomy. Although limited due to the quality and methodological limitations of the included studies, acupuncture can still be used as an effective and safe treatment for women with urinary retention after hysterectomy.

Zhao, Q., Yan, C., Dan, M., & Jia, H. Full Article

Medicine

2020, May 29

Effectiveness of acupuncture in polycystic ovary syndrome
Medicine

There was insufficient evidence to support that acupuncture could promote live birth, pregnancy, and ovulation. However, acupuncture could promote the recovery of menstrual cycles as well as downregulate the levels of LH and testosterone in patients with PCOS.

Wu, Jielei, Chen, Di, Liu, Nenghui Full Article

Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine

2020, Apr 29

Effectiveness and Safety of Acupuncture and Moxibustion for Primary Dysmenorrhea: An Overview of Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses
Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine

Acupuncture and moxibustion seem to be effective and safe approaches in treatment of primary dysmenorrhea; yet, the methodological quality of most of the studies and the quality of evidence were low. Thus, additional studies are required to further confirm these results.

Jun Yang, Jun Xiong, Ting Yuan, Xue Wang, Yunfeng Jiang, Xiaohong Zhou, Kai Liao, Lingling Xu Full Article

Deutsches Arzteblatt International

2020, Feb 21

Vulvar pruritus-Causes, Diagnosis and Therapeutic Approach
Deutsches Arzteblatt International

As vulvar pruritus has multiple causes, standardization of its diagnostic evaluation and treatment would be desirable, both to achieve optimal efficacy and to meet the diverse needs of women who suffer from this condition.

Woelber L, Prieske K, Mendling W, Schmalfeldt B, Tietz HJ, Jaeger A. Full Article

Journal of Acupuncture and Tuina Science

2020, Feb 24

Acupuncture for premature ovarian insufficiency: a systematic review and meta-analysis
Journal of Acupuncture and Tuina Science

The present study indicated that acupuncture had an advantage over hormone replacement therapy in reducing serum FSH level and increasing serum E2 level in women with premature ovarian insufficiency.

Yin, Yq., Xu, Hf., Fang, Yg. et al. Full Article

Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine

2019, Jun 25

Acupuncture for Premenstrual Syndrome at Different Intervention Time: A Systemic Review and Meta-Analysis
Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine

This systematic review shows that the overall effectiveness of acupuncture treatment of premenstrual syndrome is superior to related medications, which is consistent with previous systematic review reports. Immediate and early acupuncture have shown to improve symptoms, and overall health state.

Jiayuan Zhang, Liu Cao, Yunxia Wang, Yuxia Jin, Xiao Xiao, Qi Zhang Full Article

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews

2018, Aug 14

Acupuncture and acupressure for premenstrual syndrome
Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews Cochrane

The limited evidence available suggests that acupuncture and acupressure may improve both physical and psychological symptoms of premenstrual syndrome when compared to a sham control.

Armour M, Ee CC, Hao J, Wilson TM, Yao SS, Smith CA. Full Article

Medicine

2018, Jun

The efficacy and safety of acupuncture in women with primary dysmenorrhea: A systematic review and meta-analysis.
Medicine

The results of this study suggest that acupuncture might reduce menstrual pain and associated symptoms more effectively compared to no treatment or NSAIDs, and the efficacy could be maintained during a short-term follow-up period. Despite limitations due to the low quality and methodological restrictions of the included studies, acupuncture might be used as an effective and safe treatment for females with primary dysmenorrhea.

Woo, H. L., Ji, H. R., Pak, Y. K., Lee, H., Heo, S. J., Lee, J. M., & Park, K. S. Full Article

PLOS One

2017, Oct 27

Effects of acupuncture for the treatment of endometriosis-related pain: A systematic review and meta-analysis
PLOS One Public Library of Science

Few randomised, blinded clinical trials have addressed the efficacy of acupuncture in treating endometriosis-related pain. Nonetheless, the current literature suggests that acupuncture reduces pain and serum CA-125 levels, regardless of the control intervention used.

Yang Xu , Wenli Zhao , Te Li, Ye Zhao, Huaien Bu , Shilin Song Full Article

BMC Complementary Medicine and Therapies

2017, Aug 31

Effects of acupoint-stimulation for the treatment of primary dysmenorrhoea compared with NSAIDs: a systematic review and meta-analysis of 19 RCTs
BMC Complementary Medicine and Therapies

The study indicated that acupoint-stimulation can relieve pain effectively for primary dysmenorrhoe patients. Compared with NASIDS group patients, acupuncture patients had less side effects and it offers advantages in increasing the overall effectiveness

Xu, Y., Zhao, W., Li, T. et al. Full Article

Medicine

2017, Jun

Acupuncture for polycystic ovarian syndrome: A systematic review and meta-analysis
Medicine

This systematic review and meta-analysis suggests that the evidence base for the use of acupuncture for improving ovulation and menstruation rates and other hormonal changes in women with PCOS is weak. Given the poor reporting and methodological flaws of existing studies, large-scale, long-term RCTs with rigorous methodological input are needed to clarify the role of acupuncture in this population.

Jo, J., Lee, Y. J., & Lee, H. Full Article

European Journal of Integrative Medicine

2016, Feb

The effects of acupuncture on polycystic ovary syndrome: A systematic review and meta-analysis
European Journal of Integrative Medicine

This article highlighted the efficacy of acupuncture in significant improvements decrease in BMI and LH in women with PCOS.

The effects of acupuncture on polycystic ovary syndrome: A systematic review and meta-analysis Full Article

Journal of Acupuncture and Meridian Studies

2015, Oct

As Acupressure Decreases Pain, Acupuncture May Improve Some Aspects of Quality of Life for Women with Primary Dysmenorrhea: A Systematic Review with Meta-Analysis
Journal of Acupuncture and Meridian Studies Medical Association of Pharmacopuncture Institute

Acupressure showed evidence of pain relief while acupuncture improved both the mental and the physical components of quality of life. In conclusion, physiotherapists should consider using acupuncture and acupressure to treat primary dysmenorrhea, but a need exists for higher quality, randomized, blinded, sham-controlled trials with adequate sample sizes to establish clearly the effects of these modalities.

Abaraogu UO, Tabansi-Ochuogu CS Full Article

The Journal of Sexual Medicine

2015, Apr 1

Acupuncture for the Treatment of Vulvodynia: A Randomized Wait-List Controlled Pilot Study
The Journal of Sexual Medicine The International Society for Sexual Medicine

This was the first randomized controlled pilot study to examine the use of acupuncture for the treatment of vulvodynia. The acupuncture protocol was feasible and in this small sample appeared to reduce vulvar pain and dyspareunia with an increase in overall sexual function for women with vulvodynia. This study should be replicated in a larger double-blinded randomized controlled trial.

Schlaeger JM, Xu N, Mejta CL, Park CG, and Wilkie DJ. Full Article

BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics & Gynaecology

2014, May 24

Acupuncture for premenstrual syndrome: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials
BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics & Gynaecology Royal College of Obstetricians & Gynaecologists

Although acupuncture seems promising for symptom improvement in women with PMS, important methodological flaws in the included studies weaken the evidence. Considering the potential of acupuncture, further rigorous studies are needed.

S-Y Kim, H-J Park, H Lee, H Lee Full Article

American Journal of Physiology Endocrinology and Metabolism

2013, May 1

Acupuncture for ovulation induction in polycystic ovary syndrome: a randomized controlled trial
American Journal of Physiology Endocrinology and Metabolism American Physiological Society

This research showcased that repeated acupuncture treatments result in a higher ovulation frequency in lean/overweight women with PCOS and are more effective than the attention and time involved in the meeting with a therapist.

Johansson J, Redman L, Veldhuis PP, Sazonova A, Labrie F, Holm G, Johannsson G, Stener-Victorin E. Full Article

Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine

2013, Feb 28

Acupuncture or Acupressure at the Sanyinjiao (SP6) Acupoint for the Treatment of Primary Dysmenorrhea: A Meta-Analysis
Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine

This study indicated that acupuncture in particularly acupuncture point SP6 has significantly decrease dysmenorrhea symptoms compared to no acupuncture group.

Ma-Na Chen, Li-Wei Chien, Chi-Feng Liu Full Article

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews

2011, Sep 7

Acupuncture for pain in endometriosis
Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews Cochrane

The study highlighted the efficacy of acupuncture to reduce lower abdominal or back pain during menstruation in endometriosis patients

Xiaoshu ZhuKindreth D HamiltonEwan D McNicol Full Article

Complementary Therapies in Medicine

2010, Apr

Efficacy of acupuncture in management of premenstrual syndrome: A systematic review
Complementary Therapies in Medicine

The study highlighted a significant difference in reduction of PMS symptoms for acupuncture treatment compared with pharmacologic treatment. Patients found acupuncture to have less side effects than taking pharmacologic treatment (such as progesterone, antidepressants or pyridoxine).

Seung-HunChoaJongwooKimb Full Article