general info – Melanie was a 31 year old lawyer trying to conceive for 1 year. Husband is 43 and travels a lot. Since coming off her IUD one year ago her cycles have been irregular in length.
history – She admits to being controlling and smiles with the knowledge that surrendering is an important part of her journey toward family. She emphasized that she is not the type of person that relaxes – so I was able to express that relaxing her is now one of my primary goals for treatment. Extremely active which may be contributing to her irregular cycles. Many allergies and childhood illnesses may playing a role. She reported that her husband being away a lot, financial debt, and work are all major stressors in her life. All medical testing for both of them came back without issue.
presentations – She presented with irregular cycles (26-42 days) and a very light menstrual flow, severe pain during periods, and many premenstrual symptoms. She was very thin, typically held herself in closed postures, and rarely smiled. Heartburn, eczema, aversion to heat, and palpitations.Multiple allergies and digestive problems
pattern(s) – According to TCM, Heat affecting the Heart is prominent. This has been caused by Liver Qi Stagnation. There is also a pattern of Kidney Yang deficiency cold resulting in Heart Kidney disharmony (Heat above Cold below). Blood Stasis and Blood deficiency patterns are also displaying but secondary in importance.
goals – From a TCM perspective, optimizing her reproductive health and fertility was accomplished by reducing or improving menstrual cycle length, blood volume (2 main goals of treatment), urinary frequency, stress, heartburn, palpitations, aversion to heat, allergies, skin condition, sweet cravings, gas, bloating, abdominal pain, painful periods, cervical mucous, and PMS. Also the ability to begin to surrender and accept what is happening may be vital and key to treatment outcome success.
recommendations & treatment – Acupuncture once per week, a mild dose of Chinese herbal tablets, cut down on coffee and a few foods that may be causing inflammation, reduce exercise slightly, stop taking temperature due to stress and use ovulation strips and cervical mucous only (gaining a deep understanding of body signs that indicate ovulation), having courageous conversations with her husband about the major stressors in her life and asking him to do what he can to help, CoQ10 and fish oils daily, as well as a profound emphasis on the importance of her finding ways to accept and surrender to her circumstances as a way of freeing her body from the stronghold of the profound Qi stagnation she presents with. Her pelvic structure also seemed misaligned so I referred her to a chiropractor for a few treatments to help with this.
outcome – The first couple of months that we worked together she had 30 day cycles with an increase in menstrual volume. She soon reported a major improvement in her digestive function which at the beginning inhibited her from taking all the recommended supplements and Chinese herbal medicine but that improved very quickly. She tried a couple of rounds of clomid which were unsuccessful. After a TCM treatment course of 14 weeks she decided to take a break from the whole ‘trying to conceive’ thing. 2 months later she contacted me to inform me that she was happily 8 weeks pregnant. Her pregnancy was without complication and she delivered a healthy baby boy!
cost – approx $1500 (included; 3.5 months of weekly acupuncture treatments, daily Chinese herbal tablets and recommended dietary supplements).