Since 2002 the Paulus protocol has set the scene for fertility and IVF acupuncture by providing a scientifically backed approach to treatment. It is based on a set of points that were given in a clinical trial and since then acupuncturists have either copied the points exactly or used them as a basis of modification in their clinics.
The experiment in 2002 by Wolfgang Paulus set two groups of women having IVF treatment: each was 80 in size. In one group the women had two treatments on the day Egg Transfer, consisting of the now famous protocol of points given just before , and then just after the ET. The other group was the so called "control" group where no extra treatment was given.
The points used in the study were carefully chosen to enhance blood flow to the uterus, remove any areas that have blockages due to tension and otherwise relax the whole system.
The results were quite impressive. The measure was whether implantation had later occurred, and while the control group (no treatment) had 21 out of 80 have succesful implantation, which is 26% of the women, for those having the Paulus Protocol the numbers rose to 34 out of 80, which is a very significant 43% of participants.
Now this protocol has been studied further to explore how to improve it's efficacy and led to better understanding about the timing of treatment. The bottom line of which is that the strict "treatment on the day" need not be so strictly adhered to, particularly with regard to the treatment before the ET.
Additionally now improvements to the original protocol have been made that enhance the Chinese Medicine function of the points. I follow the approach advocated by leading practitioners that are said to bring in to play the power of what are known as "extraordinary vessels"
For those with a Chinese Medicine background, the points used
for this a modified Paulus protocol are:
Pre ET: Du 20, Pc 6, Sp 4, St 29, Sp 8
Post ET: LI 4, Sp 10, St 36, Sp 6, Lu 7, Kid 6
This provides a super powerful, yet calming approach to this process.
In my practice I always assess the needs of the individual and contrast this with the exact balance of energy in the channels. Therefore I will use the points of the "modified Paulus" protocol as the jumping off point in the treament planning.