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Let’s Talk About Men: Inflammatory Arthritis in Men Linked to Higher Rates of Infertility

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Let’s Talk About Men: Inflammatory Arthritis in Men Linked to Higher Rates of Infertility

Conception can be difficult for many couples. While there are a number of issues that can attribute to that difficulty, recent studies suggest inflammatory arthritis may have a direct impact on rates of fertility in men.

In addition to issues with fertility, inflammatory arthritis can have many hardening effects. Joint swelling, morning stiffness and tenderness are all reported as common symptoms of inflammatory arthritis.

In this article, we explore the causation between inflammatory arthritis and infertility, and also take a look at potential solutions.

New Study Links Inflammatory Arthritis and Fertility Rates in Men

Infertility can be an especially tiresome issue for patients because there are often more than one contributing factors to account for. A few of the most common causes of infertility in men are sperm abnormalities, hormonal imbalances, infections, obesity, and genetic factors. However, a recent study suggest startling evidence that links infertility to inflammatory arthritis.

The study, that included 628 participants of men between the ages of 25 and 50, suggested that there is a direct correlation between inflammatory arthritis (IA) and male fertility rates. Men who were diagnosed with IA during or before the peak reproduction age had lower fertility rates compared to men without IA.

Inflammatory arthritis is a disease caused by an overactive immune system, resulting in various types of joint pain. The pain experienced with inflammatory arthritis is attributed to an overactive immune system, and is therefore known as an “autoimmune disease.” With inflammatory arthritis, the body’s immune system turns on itself, overproducing white blood cells, called lymphocytes. This overproduction is what results in the constant inflammation and swelling that we know as inflammatory arthritis.

Inflammation’s Role in Arthritis and Fertility according to Chinese Medicine

In Chinese Medicine, the inflammation that results in arthritis can be attributed to a few different causes. In identifying the correct causation, TCM practitioners can gain a better sense of what solution may best fit the individual patient’s symptoms.

  • Obstruction in Qi and Blood: In both fertility and inflammatory arthritis, TCM places importance on the smooth flow of Qi (vital energy) and blood throughout the body. For fertility, this is crucial for reproductive health, while in inflammatory arthritis, it can help address pain and inflammation.
  • Kidney Health: TCM views the Kidneys as a foundational aspect of both fertility and inflammatory arthritis. In fertility, the Kidneys store essence (Jing) crucial for reproduction, while in inflammatory arthritis, strengthening Kidney energy is often a focus to support overall health.
  • Liver Qi Flow: TCM recognizes the importance of a smoothly flowing Liver Qi (energy) for both fertility and inflammatory arthritis. In fertility, addressing Liver Qi stagnation may be beneficial, while in inflammatory arthritis, maintaining healthy Liver function supports overall well-being.
  • Emotional Wellbeing: Emotional factors such as stress are considered significant in TCM for both fertility and inflammatory arthritis. Emotional imbalances or stress can impact the flow of Qi and blood, potentially affecting fertility and exacerbating arthritis symptoms.

How can Chinese Medicine Help with Fertility linked to Inflammatory Arthritis?

Many individuals search for solutions to either arthritis or infertility within the confines of standard medicine practices without success. Unlike many of today’s medical solutions, TCM approaches arthritis and infertility from a holistic approach, including every contributing factor before suggesting a diagnosis or solution.

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) takes a holistic perspective on arthritis and infertility, addressing all relevant factors before proposing a diagnosis or treatment. It aim to root at the look cause instead of simply masking the symptoms.

Acupuncture for Inflammatory Arthritis and Infertility

Within TCM, the most widely sought after solution for infertility resulting from arthritis is acupuncture. By placing acupuncture needles in specific places in the body, an acupuncture specialist can directly influence the causations of pain such as blood stasis, Qi deficiencies, or cold/dampness in the body. This was showcased in a study that concluded acupuncture helps to improve blood circulation in the effected joints and extremities. A practitioner can isolate the treatment so as to treat the specific area of pain and provide optimal relief.

Recent studies have shown that acupuncture can directly reduce pain and stiffness in joints by stimulating the nerves, muscles, and connective tissue surrounding the affected area. The study also showed that acupuncture may further help reduce inflammation by promoting prolonged vascular and immunomodulatory health.

The same impacts that acupuncture can have on arthritis in the body can also occur in reproductive health, improving fertility in men. One scientific review highlighted how acupuncture was associated with significant improvement in sperm motility, sperm concentration, and fertility rates.

Furthermore, acupuncture has additional benefits that many patients consider before treatment. These can include reduction of stress, and an increase in the production of cortisol – a hormone that will also help control inflammation in the body.

While the proper solutions vary for each patient, acupuncture in addition to other traditional remedies, can tremendously help treat both inflammatory arthritis and infertility in men.

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For more information about how Chinese Medicine can help you with arthritis and infertility, book your free consultation with our Chinese Medicine experts today

* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. We can’t guarantee the treatment result, as the symptoms of conditions are unpredictable and vary greatly from person to person. The treatment length and recovery time also varies for individual. Please visit our clinics website: GinSen where a specialists will discuss your care and provide a consultation, and the treatment will be designed to meet your individual needs.

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