Saturday, October 24, 2009

Fairhaven Health Supplement

I was offered fertility supplements from Fairhaven Health to try and give a review of. I will be taking the FertileCM, FertilAid for Woman and my husband will be taking the FertilAid for Men. I'm so excited. I just received them and I will be trying them right away. I'm most excited about the FertileCM. At my age I need all the help I can get! I will be taking them as the bottle suggests and I will post any improvements if/when I see them. Cross your fingers......

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Pycnogenol for Men

According to a study done by Dr. Scott Roseff, author of the study and Director of the West Essex Center for Advanced Reproductive Endocrinology "Up to 60% of infertile couples have difficulty conceiving due to abnormalities in the male's sperm. By taking Pycnogenol(r) to increase normally functioning sperm naturally, couples may be able to (or potentially) avoid in-vitro fertilization and either enjoy improved natural fertility or undergo less invasive and less expensive fertility-promoting procedures."
Pycnogenol(r) is a natural plant extract originating from the bark of the Maritime pine that grows along the coast of southwest France. It represents a unique and natural combination of genetically programmed constant proportions of procyanidins, bioflavonoids and organic acids, making it a super antioxidant.
The antioxidant Pycnogenol improved the quality and function of sperm in men with fertility problems by a mean of 38% and 19%, respectively, after only 90 days of use, according to a new landmark clinical trial being published in the October 2002 issue of the Journal of Reproductive Medicine, giving infertile couples new hope and a new alternative to more invasive procedures.

This info found on The Fertility Shop

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Endo and Pycnogenol

There's promising hope for women who suffer from endometriosis, one of the most common causes of infertility and pelvic pain. A new study to be published in an upcoming edition of the Journal of Reproductive Medicine reveals that Pycnogenol (pic-noj-en-all), an antioxidant plant extract from the bark of the French maritime pine tree, significantly reduces symptoms of endometriosis by 33 percent. Pycnogenol which holds a patent for reducing PMS/menstrual pain and discomfort, was chosen for this study because other endometriosis treatments can have unwanted side effects. "The cause of endometriosis is unknown and treatment to fully cure endometriosis has yet to be developed," said Dr. Takafumi Kohama, a lead researcher of the study. "Common hormone treatments such as gonadotropin-releasing hormone agents (Gn-RHa) may likely restrict women from becoming pregnant during treatment. Danazol, another hormone treatment, produces side effects such as ovarian deficiency, osteoporosis and obesity. Our results convey Pycnogenol as an extremely effective natural treatment without dangerous side effects," he said. The study, held at Kanazawa University School of Medicine, Ishokawa, Japan, sampled 58 women who underwent operations for endometriosis within six months prior to the study. After confirming regular menstruation and ovulation for three months before treatment, patients were examined before and at 4,12, 24 and 48 weeks after treatment began to check for symptom control (pain, urinary and bowel symptom, breakthrough bleeding). Pain was evaluated by patients self-assessment and an investigator interviewed and performed a gynecologic examination. Patients were randomized to two groups: Pycnogenol and Gn-RHa. Patients who supplemented with Pycnogenol took 30 mg capsules orally twice daily for 48 weeks immediately after morning and evening meals. Patients who received the Gn-RHa therapy received injected leuprorelin acetate depot, 3.75 mg intracutaneously, six times every four weeks for 24 weeks. (Leuprorelin treatment completely blocks estrogen in the body and must be discontinued after 24 weeks because of side effects). Both treatment groups showed no differences at start of treatment and reported severe pain, pelvic tenderness and pelvic indurations. After four weeks, Pycnogenol slowly but steadily reduced all symptoms from severe to moderate. Treatment with Gn-RHa reduced the scores more efficiently but after 24 weeks post-treatment a relapse of symptoms occurred. "As expected, Gn-RHa suppressed menstruation during treatment, whereas no influence on menstrual cycles was observed in the Pycnogenol group. Gn-RHa lowered estrogen levels drastically and in contrast, the estrogen levels of the Pycnogenol group showed no systematic changes over the observation period," said Dr. Kohama. "In addition, five women in the trial taking Pycnogenol actually got pregnant," he said. When Gn-RHa is used continuously for more than two weeks, the production of oestrogen stops, depriving the endometrial implants of oestrogen, causing them to become inactive and degenerate. Most women will stop bleeding within 2 months of starting treatment and return of ovulation and menstruation varies. Endometriosis affects women in their reproductive years and is estimated to affect over one million women in the United States. It is one of the common reasons women have to undergo hysterectomies and laparoscopic surgery. The average diagnostic age is 25-30, however endometriosis has been reported in girls as young as eleven years of age. There have been significant studies with Pycnogenol revealing treatment efficacy of common problems associated with menstruation, such as dysmenorrhea, menstrual pain and endometriosis. Research has shown a reduction in abdominal pain due to endometriosis. Studies have shown a clear improvement in terms of reduction of menstrual cramps and pain in 73% of women following administration of 30 mg Pycnogenol day for one month, in addition to those with endometriosis. Abdominal pain due to endometriosis was reduced in 80% of the patients and cramps disappeared in 77% of the women taking Pycnogenol according to a study published in the European Bulletin of Drug Research.

Article adapted by Medical News Today from original press release.

About Pycnogenol
Pycnogenol is a natural plant extract originating from the bark of the maritime pine that grows along the coast of southwest France and is found to contain a unique combination of procyanidins, bioflavonoids and organic acids, which offer extensive natural health benefits. The extract has been widely studied for the past 35 years and has more than 220 published studies and review articles ensuring safety and efficacy as an ingredient.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

The Herbs Are Working

In Nov 2008 my fsh was 18 and my e2 was really high. Well I received my blood results today and my fsh is 11 and my e2 is 76. I have not been taking the herbs for three months yet so I'm excited to see what happens in three to four months. Because of my massive adhesions the doctor does not want to do surgery because they always come back worse. He thinks that I could end up with a bowel blockage and things could get really bad. So I will be moving to IVF in four months. He did give me the speech about my age and gave me a low % of success. But he also said that herbs would not change anything. Doctors seem to have a hard time with change. Herbs are proven time and time again. I've also researched the % of unexpected pregnancies and woman in their 40's are second to teenagers. The research states that if all women in their 40's were trying to conceive the pregnancy rate would be second to teenagers. It is a statistical fact. So I'm going with the facts. I will keep posting my lab results as I get them and keep track of all the changes. I will also be trying to lose 30 lbs. I'm not over weight but I'm at the high end of the weight range for my height. I'm excited.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Herbs for Infertility

COQ10 – 120 - 200 mg - for implantation, better lining, egg quality, heart health
DHEA – 25 -75 mg - healthy eggs
Omega 369 - ~900, 400, 350 mg, respectively, anti-inflamm+egg quality, increases EWCM, supports the nervous system
B-6 – 100-200 mg daily to increase LP B Complex – for liver health, to reduce estrogen dominance
Folic acid – 1- 5 mg for egg quality vit C – 1000 mg low dose increases EWCM, large doses will dry you
Vit E
Prenatal Vitamin
Fish Oil – 1200 - 2000 mg
Evening Primrose Oil – 2000 mg until to increase EWCM, estrogenic effect
Baby Aspirin – 81 mg from day after:o: to for recurrent miscarriages
Royal Jelly – 100 mg or 1 teaspoon daily
Wheatgrass – 10 pills per night, or 1 teaspoon daily
Spirulina –
Green tea (1-2 cups a day) increases fertility by 15% Zinc – egg quality
Manganese Copper
Fertile Aid
Vitex – 1000 mg in LP
Raspberry leaf tea -
uterine tonic Iron – at least 41 mg needed to make eggs
Progesterone – from day after to to build up lining
Soy Isoflavones – 160 mg from cd 5-9
Guafenesin – 2 teaspoons (10cc) 3 times daily from cd 5-9 for EWCM

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

AMH Test Showing Antral Follicles in the Ovaries

What is AMH ?
AMH stands for Anti-Mullerian Hormone. Since AMH is produced directly by the ovarian follicles, AMH levels correlate with the number of antral follicles in the ovaries . It has been documented that women with lower AMH have lower antral follicular counts and produce a lower number of oocytes compared with women with higher levels.

AMH Reference ranges

Ovarian Fertility Potential pmol/L
Optimal Fertility 28.6 pmol/L - 48.5 pmol/L
Satisfactory Fertility 15.7 pmol/L - 28.6 pmol/L
Low Fertility 2.2 pmol/L - 15.7 pmol/L

AMH levels do not vary with the menstrual cycle and can be measured independently of the day of the menstrual cycle.
AMH can be used for
1. Evaluating Fertility Potential and ovarian response in IVF – Serum AMH levels correlate with the number of early antral follicles. This makes is useful for prediciting your ovarian response in an IVF cycle. Women with low AMH levels are more likely to be poor ovarian responders.
2. Measuring Ovarian Aging – Diminished ovarian reserve, is signaled by reduced baseline serum AMH concentrations. Women with poor ovarian reserve who have entered the oopause have low levels of AMH.
The other tests to check ovarian reserve include checking your inhibin levels.
However, these are new and expensive tests, and is still not easily available. This is why the gold standard for ovarian reserve testing is still the Day 3 FSH level.

The theory is that because the level of anti-mullerian hormone found in the blood does not fluctuate throughout the month, it could be an accurate predictor of whether a woman is still fertile and how many eggs she has left in her ovaries. The manufactures claim that it is more accurate than a simple oestrogen test. If they’re right, then the test would be a predictor of who’s more likely to have success with in-vitro fertilization.
In addition to the test’s possible applications as a predictor of fertility, it may also be useful as a test for polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS). It is believed that women with PCOS have elevated levels of AMH in their blood, which would make the AMH test ideal for diagnosis.
How the Test is DoneCurrently, the test is not covered by most insurance and it expensive to have done. To perform the test 3mls of blood is taken on the second or third day of the woman’s period. Using the results of the test and an "Ovarian Reserve Index", the estimated number of eggs remaining in the ovaries is plotted on a graph showing the woman’s position compared with the average number for her age group. Makers of the test claim that this will predict ovarian reserves for the next two years.
ControversyThere is some controversy over what exactly this test can truly tell you, if anything. Using the test as a predictor of menopause is probably useless, but using it as an indicator of ovarian reserves may be more feasible. Whatever the use, fertility experts currently believe that the AMH test is about 70 percent accurate.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

More on DHEA

CHR's Prematurely Aging Ovaries Program

Here at CHR, we have a special interest in the “older women pregnancy and the aging ovary,” and have been conducting considerable research on this topic. Indeed, older women (those above age 38), and younger women with so-called prematurely aging ovaries (POA), will often find it harder to get pregnant. As reported in the CHR Voice, (our newsletter that provides ongoing updates on the progress of our research and our patients' results), we have been leading the way in exploring and implementing ways to treat prematurely aging ovaries

DHEA Beneficial Effects

The investigators at CHR have been using the mild male hormone dehydroepiandrosterone DHEA now for a number of years very successfully in women with diminished ovarian reserve (DOR), whether their ovarian impairment is due to advanced age or premature ovarian aging (POA). In doing so, we have been able to demonstrate that in such women DHEA supplementation has quite remarkable beneficial effects (see Table 1), which all can be summarized as rejuvenating ovarian function.


Increases egg (oocyte) and embryo counts
Improves egg and embryo quality
Increases number of embryos available for embryo transfer
Increases euploid (chromosomally normal) embryos available
Speeds up time to pregnancy in fertility treatment
Increases spontaneously conceived pregnancies
Improves IVF pregnancy rates
Improves cumulative pregnancy rates in patients under treatment
Decreases spontaneous miscarriage rates
likely reduces aneuploidy (chromosomal abnormalities ) in embryos


Improved overall feeling
Physically stronger
Improved sex drive
Mentally sharper
Better memory

During all that time of DHEA use at CHR, we have carefully monitored side effects of the medication and have been impressed by how rarely even the most common side effects, such as oily skin, acne and hair loss, seem to occur.We, however, have been even more surprised that quite often what we really heard were anything but side effects; indeed, many more patients than complained about side effects, commented to us how much better overall DHEA supplementation makes them feel. Table 2 summarizes some of the specifics.Now comes a study, reported in the prestigious Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism (Davis et al. 2008; 93:801-8), in which investigators from Australia report that DHEA appears to improve cognitive functions in women. Specifically, they noted that higher endogenous DHEA levels are independently and favorably associated with executive function, concentration and working memory. It seems our patients knew all along what they were talking about!

Overview of CHR's Research

We have known for quite some time that many centers around the world have routinely started using DHEA. One of these centers has been Toronto West Fertility Associates, in Toronto, Canada. We have intermittently heard from them that anecdotally they had similar results to ours, but last December they were kind enough to send us their whole, meticulously kept data bank on DHEA usage at their center.Their pregnancy experience results were, indeed, very similar to ours. What we, however, were most interested in this time was not pregnancy, but miscarriage rates. As we have repeatedly noted in our UPDATEs, we have come to believe that DHEA supplementation may reduce the number of chromosomally abnormal embryos (aneuploidy). We reached this conclusion after making two observations: (1) In a small number of women who underwent PGD after they had been treated with DHEA, we found lower aneuploidy rates than in women without DHEA supplementation. Unfortunately, women in need of DHEA usually have small embryo numbers and, therefore, only very rarely qualify for PGD. This kind of data accumulation is, therefore, very slow and we so far have not reached statistically robust enough numbers. (2) Our second, related observation was that we noted a surprisingly low miscarriage rate in DHEA pregnancies.
Since miscarriages, especially in older women, are mostly due to chromosomal abnormalities, this observation, too, suggested the possibility that DHEA may reduce aneuploidy rates. To reach statistically robust conclusions, once again relatively large (pregnancy) numbers were required and we therefore, up to this point, have been cautious to not over interpret our own data.This is why the timing of the arrival of the Toronto data was so exciting; these data not only confirmed the high pregnancy rate in very unfavorable patients with diminished ovarian reserve, but demonstrated an identical reduction in miscarriage rate to the one observed by us (when compared to national IVF data). Since the combined data sets between CHR and the Toronto center involve an adequate size patient sample, we are now confident to state that DHEA supplementation significantly decreases the miscarriage rate in women with diminished ovarian reserve.Indeed, we even can go beyond this statement: While a reduction in miscarriage rates is seen in women of all ages, the reduction is smaller in women below age 35 than in women above age 35 years, where the reduction often exceeds 50 percent. This, of course, should not surprise since miscarriages are known to increase with advancing female age. Most of these miscarriages are, however, due to aneuploidy and this observation brings us back to where we started from: Our new data, on the decrease in miscarriage rates after DHEA supplementation especially in older women above age 35, strongly support that DHEA, indeed, reduces chromosomal abnormalities (aneuploidy rates) in embryos.The importance of this observation cannot be overemphasized. Since older women represent in the USA the most rapidly growing age group of women having babies, our findings may have significance far beyond those older women who require fertility treatment. Indeed, if confirmed by further studies, DHEA may become a supplement to be given, like prenatal vitamins, to all (older) women contemplating pregnancy.

Treatment history summary - 2007

Probably the most exciting news in our continuous efforts to investigate the beneficial effects of DHEA supplementation on the ovary, is that the prospectively, double blinded, randomized study, which we started at the beginning of the year in collaboration with a number of European centers, is progressing well. Our European colleagues are, indeed, succeeding in enrolling patients into this placebo-controlled trial and we expect, at least preliminary results, by year end.Since this study was formally registered as a clinical trial, we received innumerable requests from U.S.-based women to participate. Unfortunately, this study is, for cost reasons, only conducted in Europe. Patients, who wish to be considered for DHEA treatment in the U.S., have to become our patients. The potential advantage here, of course, is that you do not run a 50% risk of being treated with placebo.Those of you, who have recently looked at CHRs 2006 IVF cycle outcomes, will already be fully aware of the dramatic improvement we experienced in pregnancy rates in women above age 40. With an overall clinical pregnancy rate of 23.5% in women at ages 40-45, we in statistically significant terms exceeded our pregnancy rates in these age groups for the years 2003-2005. The only change that had taken place in 2006 was the addition of DHEA supplementation in a systematic way to all women who had failed at least one prior IVF attempt. All in all, only 43% of women above age 40, therefore, received DHEA supplementation; yet, pregnancy rates still improved dramatically.Based on these findings, we have now instituted DHEA supplementation for all women above age 40. As a consequence, we fully expect a further improvement in our 2007 pregnancy rates in women of these age groups. Our second declared goal for the year 2007 is to expand our treatment successes in older women beyond age 45. We, therefore, encourage older women, above that age, who are still interested in pursuing conception with their own oocytes, to contact us. We have gotten very close to breaking the 46-year barrier, but are so-far still approximately one month shy.Our third goal for the year is to attempt DHEA supplementation in women with outright premature ovarian failure (POF). Amongst women with POF, some still demonstrate significant follicular activity, though their follicles fail to mature. Such patients now can be identified via their anti-Mullerian hormone levels and we suspect that, in these selected cases, DHEA may be helpful. Whether this, indeed, will be the case is, at the present time, still unknown; but we feel it is worthwhile investigating.

There are many more studies here,