Defined as the absence of menstruation in pre-menopausal women, amenorrhea is a condition that can be resolved with acupuncture treatment and other forms of Chinese medicine. There are two types of amenorrhea. Primary amenorrhea is diagnosed when the woman has never experienced menstruation months or years after reaching 16 years of age. Secondary amenorrhea is the cessation of menses for at least three months when no breastfeeding is involved, when there is no menopause, or when there is no confirmed pregnancy. This type of amenorrhea may be due to several possible factors like improper ovary functioning, psychological disorders, stress, eating disorders, extreme weight loss, intense exercising, hypopituitarism, hypothyroidism, or elevated androgens or prolactin. Typical symptoms include goiters, headaches, swollen breasts, nausea, and the stoppage of menstruation.
The response of the lining of the uterus to stimulation and the feedback system between the ovaries, pituitary gland, and the hypothalamus are the two factors that determine normal menstrual cycles. When amenorrhea develops, the aim of the treatment then is to bring back this feedback system. Several hormones are responsible for ensuring normal menstruation. They include GnRH (gonadotropin-releasing hormone), androgen, progesterone, estrogen, prolactin, LH (luteinizing hormone), and FSH (follicle-stimulating hormone).
Amenorrhea Cure Using Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture
The kidneys, spleen, and liver are the most important body organs that normalize menstruation and blood, according to Chinese medicine. The kidneys govern egg quality, conception, and reproduction while the liver and spleen regulate the smooth flow of the hormones and the amount of nutrients in the body. Acupuncturists treat patients suffering from amenorrhea according to the individual evaluation of their patient’s specific condition and design a customized plan of treatment that is both effective and appropriate.
Regulating the ovarian-hypothalamus-pituitary axis and bettering hormonal balance, acupuncture stimulates circulation of blood to the brain and reproductive organs. The treatment also comforts the body and lowers levels of stress (high stress levels can disrupt menstruation by obstructing blood flow to the reproductive organs and causing hormonal production imbalance).
To adjust the ovarian-hypothalamus-pituitary axis and aid in the building of the uterine lining, Chinese herbs are prescribed to the patient according to the patient’s symptoms and constitution. The restoration of balance leads to the normalization and improvement of the natural hormonal production of the body that in turn results in a normal menstrual cycle. Moreover, Chinese herbs upgrade reproductive health by nourishing the kidney, liver, and spleen systems of the body.
A specialized type of physiotherapy, reproductive organ massage (ROM) is a type of therapeutic massage that aims to establish a better connection between the ovary and the pituitary and boost blood flow to the ovaries by the manipulation (massage) of the fascia of the pelvic cavity. ROM can also enhance the function of the endocrine system and improve blood flow to the pelvic region.
For the treatment of amenorrhea, nutritional therapy is also important. This type of therapy is uniquely designed for each patient based on the health of her spleen, liver, and kidney functions. These organs are all responsible for a woman’s reproductive health and they support her metabolic processes as well. Amenorrhea sufferers are required to eat a high quality diet consisting of lean meats, organic fruits and vegetables, and whole grains and avoid eating junk food and sugar to help restore balance to their hormones and bring back normal menstrual function. Moreover, amenorrhea patients need to augment their intake of essential fatty acids, B6, selenium, zinc, boron, vitamins A, C, D, E, K, and calcium.
Western Medicine Treatment of Amenorrhea
Western conventional medicine uses a protocol of birth control pills and hormone therapy to help normalize the menstrual cycle of an amenorrhea patient. However, Western medicine cannot cure this condition, only treat its symptoms.
Related Articles and Studies on Amenorrhea
The Thousand Buddha Mountain Hospital in Jinan, China was the site where a clinical study was conducted to test the effectiveness acupuncture in the treatment of amenorrhea over drug therapy. The study had 95 participants all suffering from amenorrhea for six months and more who developed the condition due to birth control pill usage. Acupuncture treatment was administered to 57 of the patients while drugs were given to the rest. There were a total six courses with each course having 20 treatments with five-day breaks between the courses. The patients given drug treatment were first given Stilbestrol, then an injection of Progesteronum. A month after the end of the study, the average effective rate of the patients treated with acupuncture was 96.5% while that of the drug therapy group was 97.4%. But six months after the end of the study the drug therapy group’s effective rate dropped to almost 79% while the acupuncture group’s rate slightly dropped to just 94.7%. These outcomes show that the long-range benefits of acupuncture in treating amenorrhea was much superior to that of medications.
China has done several studies that show the superiority of Chinese herbal medicine, moxibustion, and acupuncture over Western conventional modes of treatment in the treatment of menstrual conditions, especially amenorrhea.
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