Traditional Chinese medicine double the chances of conceiving in couples with fertility problems as compared to western drugs, finds a new study.
The researchers at Adelaide University, Australia, reviewed eight clinical trials, 13 other studies and case reports comparing the efficacy of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) with western drugs or IVF treatment.
The review, funded by the Australian government, included 1,851 women with infertility problems, and the clinical trials alone found a 3.5 rise in pregnancies over a four-month period among women using TCM compared with western medicine.
Other data covering 616 women within the review showed 50 percent of women having TCM got pregnant compared with 30 percent of those receiving IVF treatment.
The overall analysis concluded that there was a two-fold increase in the likelihood of getting pregnant in a four-month period for women using TCM as compared with orthodox approaches.
"Our meta-analysis suggests traditional Chinese herbal medicine to be more effective in the treatment of female infertility - achieving on average a 60 percent pregnancy rate over four months compared with 30 percent achieved with standard western drug treatment," the Daily Mail quoted the study's authors as saying.
According to the study, the difference appeared to be due to the careful analysis of the menstrual cycle, the period when it is possible for a woman to conceive, by TCM practitioners.
The study has been published in the journal Complementary Therapies in Medicine.