Lesley O'Connor Fertility Naturopath

Wondering how a IVF Naturopath in Brisbane can help your IVF success? We’re so lucky to have IVF, and the average IVF live birth rate per single initiated cycle is still only 30%. Let’s face it, IVF is expensive. I find people are wanting to do everything possible to improve their chances of going home with a baby. That’s where an IVF Naturopath in Brisbane can come in very handy!

From being in clinical practice, I have been the benefits of using both naturopathic medicine along side IVF can have. In come cases we can achieve better egg numbers at harvest, higher fertilisation rates, more day 5 blastocysts, and higher clinical pregnancy rates.

This highlights the importance of Naturopathic Medicine during IVF. Earlier this week I was asked how I help people as an IVF Naturopath. I thought it was such a great question! There are several ways I help couples and individuals doing IVF. Mostly it depends on your fertility and individual health. Today I’m going to cover a few ways of how I help those with endometriosis doing IVF as it’s very common. This is definitely not an exhaustive list, as we know that endometriosis and the female reproductive system is very complex!

There are 5 key points in which a IVF Naturopath can help:

  1. 1. Preconception care

Endometriosis affects egg quality so this enhancing this is top priority in the 3 months leading up to egg collection. Here we focus on nutrition, lifestyle, and specific supplements based on your individual pathology results. Preconception care also focuses on as supporting you body to function optimally heading into a IVF cycle. This is so it can deal with the IVF medications and improve pregnancy outcomes.

This looks like investigating and optimising hormones including insulin, oestrogen detoxification, thyroid function, and micronutrients such as zinc, selenium, B12 and folate.

  1. 2. Help maintain quality of eggs during STIMs cycle

During this stage of IVF It’s important to focus on increasing follicular fluid concentrations of antioxidants & nutrients known to influence egg quality. One of the biggest challenges with IVF is creating good quality embryos. This relates back to egg and sperm quality. Here we create an individual plan with dietary, lifestyle and supplementation protocol for this 10ish days.

  1. 3. Oestrogen detoxification support

IVF stimulation cycle medications exacerbate endometriosis. Your levels of oestrogen can rise to be 40 x the amount we’d normally see in the first part of your cycle. In-between egg pick up and a fresh transfer we want to quickly support oestrogen detoxification to help implantation of an embryo. If there are higher levels of oestrogen, even with adequate levels of progesterone, it can inhibit the embryo from implanting in the uterus lining. We want to balance the hormone levels to encourage the embryo to stick.

  1. 4. Improve endometrial receptivity and progesterone production

After an embryo transfer, we want to encourage the embryo to implant in the uterus for the pregnancy to continue. Here we focus on anti-spasmodic herbs, blood building, and anti-clotting herbs, and immune modulating herbs. Poor blood flow, clotting, dysbiosis, and high natural killer cells at the uterine lining can impact an embryo implanting. During the 2 week wait, after an embryo has been transferred, we also want to focus on increasing production of your own progesterone. Low progesterone can contribute to unsuccess implantation and early miscarriage. Encouraging the production of your own progesterone is important as oral or pessary progesterone may not be enough.

  1. 5. Improve pregnancy outcomes with a IVF Naturopath in Brisbane

If an IVF round is successful there is important areas to support to reduce the risk of pregnancy complications. These revolve around supporting correct placenta development, which is impacted by inflammation, oxidisation, uterine dysbiosis that can affect implantation as discussed above. What you may not know is that when an embryo doesn’t implant far enough into the uterine lining it can compromise the growth of the placenta. This can restrict blood flow to your baby and contribute to pre-eclampsia later in pregnancy.

It’s important to remember that IVF cannot over-come certain barriers to getting pregnant. These include compromised egg and sperm DNA fragmentation, thyroid dysfunction, poor metabolic health, or nutrient deficiencies. While it’s amazing that we have such advanced reproductive technology preconception care is still so important and also improves outcomes.

If you’re looking for a IVF Naturopath in Brisbane (or via Telehealth) to help you with your IVF success get in touch today or book an appointment now. My highly recommended Enhance your Fertility Package is best for those going through IVF. You get the most support which is vital to IVF success.

Lesley O'Connor Fertility Naturopath Blog