Objective: To observe the efficacy differences between acupuncture combined with medication and medication alone for infertility patients with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).
Methods: According to random number table, a total of 60 infertility patients with PCOS were randomly assigned into an observation group and a control group, 30 cases in each one. The patients in the control group were treated with diane-35 from the 3rd day into menstruation, and one menstrual cycle was taken as a session of treatment. At the same time of using diane-35, the patients in the observation group were treated with acupuncture at Guanyuan (CV 4), Qihai (CV 6), Sanyinjiao (SP 6), Zusanli (ST 36), Zigong (EX-CA 1), Shenshu (BL 23), Pishu (BL 20), Weishu (BL 21) and Ganshu (BL 18) during non-menstruation period; the acupuncture was given once every two days, three treatments per week. The patients in both groups were treated for two sessions. The basic sex hormone and body mass index (BMI) were compared between the two groups before and after treatment. After ovulation induction treatment, the endometrial thickness, amount of mature follicle, ovulation rate, clinical pregnancy rate, occurrence rate of ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS) and the number of early spontaneous abortion were compared between the two groups during ovulation.
Results: After treatment, the luteinizing hormone (LH), testosterone (T) and BMI reduced in the observation group (all P<0.05), while only LH reduced in the control group (P<0.05). The reducing of estradiol (E2), T and BMI in the observation group was more significant than that in the control group (all P<0.05). The ovulation rate was 93.3% (28/30) in the observation group, which was higher than 80.0% (24/30) in the control group (P<0.05). The rate of clinical pregnancy was 43.3% (13/30) in the observation group, which was higher than 33.3% (10/30) in the control group (P<0.05). The differences of endometrial thickness, amount of mature follicle, occurrence rate of OHSS and number of early spontaneous abortion were not significant between the two groups (all P>0.05).
Conclusion: Acupuncture as adjunctive treatment could improve BMI, reduce the levels of LH, E2 and T, increase ovulation reaction and effectively shorten reproduction cycles in infertility patients with PCOS.
Keywords: acupuncture; body mass index (BMI); diane-35; infertility; ovulation induction; polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS); randomized controlled trial (RCT); sex hormone.