An Integrative Approach to Diagnosing and Treating Unexplained Infertility

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Up to 30 per cent of couples trying to conceive worldwide are thought to have unexplained infertility, yet the diagnosis, treatment and management of these cases are often ill-defined, inconsistent and erroneous. A true diagnosis of unexplained infertility, which is considered a diagnosis of exclusion, requires a skillful clinician and appropriate diagnostic testing. Lack of consistent and standardised diagnostic protocols for couples trying to conceive frequently leads to non-identification of explainable causes and therefore couples do not receive proper treatment and lose valuable time. Finding no identifiable cause for infertility does not mean that one does not exist. Careful investigation of the male and female must be undertaken in order to properly diagnose unexplained infertility. Even after an exhaustive exploration, typical Western interventions are limited, costly and frequently ineffective. Integrating traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) with orthodox medical diagnostics and procedures, or using TCM alone often offers the most successful approach to achieving a healthy pregnancy and birth in cases of unexplained infertility. This article explores unexplained infertility from an integrative perspective, and provides a diagnostic approach and treatment suggestions for TCM practitioners who wish to help patients and couples who have received this diagnosis.
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Author Katherine Alexander Anderson
JCM Issue JCM 118-49
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