Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID) is an infection of the female reproductive organs. Transmission is via bacteria during sexual intercourse and is as a result of the said infection spreading from the vagina to the uterus, fallopian tubes, and ovaries. The bacteria responsible for PID include those that cause STIs such as chlamydia and gonorrhea. This means that increased cases of reported STI contraction in New Zealand point to an increased risk of PID contraction.
Symptoms of PID may not manifest until later on, and thus one may not realize that they have it. This alone raises a lot of concern and begs the need for individual and social awareness if sexually active. In addition, there are symptoms associated with PID, these are:
- Pain in the lower abdomen is the most common symptom
- Foul-smelling vaginal discharge
- Pain during sexual intercourse
- Pain when urinating
- Irregular bleeding
- General tiredness
While these are general symptoms, there are women who tend to experience them more severely including sharp abdominal pain, vomiting, fainting, and very high fever. If left untreated, PID could be potentially life-threatening, especially if the infection spreads to the blood. Long-term consequences include infertility, ectopic pregnancies, and chronic pelvic pain.
How Acupuncture May Help
Recent studies have come up showing that acupuncture may be effective in treating PID. The aim of acupuncture and TCM’s whole holistic approach is to improve the flow of Qi and blood throughout the body, the latter adding sense to how acupuncture may be of help. Good blood flow to the pelvic region will facilitate fighting the bacteria responsible for causing PID. Acupuncture also boosts the body’s self-healing capacity and immune system, leaving it in a better position to ward off any infection. Acupuncture also works well in conjunction with antibiotics and other medication where necessary depending on the severity of the patient’s condition.
Two related studies similarly titled; Acupuncture for Chronic Pelvic Inflammatory Disease, (Yudan Liang et al.,2014 and Ying Cheng et al.,2018), aimed to prove the overall benefits of acupuncture in the treatment of chronic PID. The first study followed 15 patients diagnosed with the infection who received acupuncture therapy bi-weekly for 3 months. On being interviewed, different participants voiced different concerns they had, the most recurrent being pregnancy aspirations. The other concern was fear of serious gynecological complications such as ectopic pregnancies. The participants reported feeling hopeful and confident after treatment.
The second study was a systematic review protocol where a literature search was conducted electronically up to October 2018 in several databases like MEDLINE, Cochrane Library, EBASE, and CNKI to determine the effectiveness of acupuncture on chronic PID. The study included clinical trials with acupuncture treatment, and outcome measure consisted of improvement rate, pain relief, recurrence rate, and side effects. The findings reported that a significant benefit is gained from the use of acupuncture therapy.
Take the Preventative Approach
If any of the above-mentioned symptoms occur, it would be best to see a doctor immediately before the infection spreads further. If infected, acupuncture goes a long way in treatment, and alleviation of the pain experienced. If no infection is present, take the preventative approach. Acupuncture has far-reaching benefits and is good for your overall health.
Fill in our online questionnaire for free – and save the $135 it would cost you to do this detailed medical history in person with a practitioner. You can request a phone call from a practitioner after they have read your online form, or just book your initial exam for $40. Call us on 07 846 7956 to book, or fill in the questionnaire now.
We have a clinic in Hamilton and also in the Duke St Medical Centre in Cambridge on Wednesday and Friday afternoons.
Liang, Y., & Gong, D. (2014). Acupuncture for chronic pelvic inflammatory disease: a qualitative study of patients’ insistence on treatment. BMC complementary and alternative medicine, 14(1), 345.