Support with pregnancy and childbirth problems and wellbeing Expert advice and treatments for women's health Couples fertility treatment specialist Using acupuncture for fertility
Specialist treatment clinic for Gynaecology and androlog

Specialist treatment clinic: Gynaecology and andrology

Jo George Acupuncture, Chinese Herbal Medicine Practitioner
Jo George
MBAc; MSc CHM; BSc (Hons)
Traditional Acupuncture, Chinese Herbal Medicine Practitioner

Fully insured Member of The British Acupuncture Council and Register of Chinese Herbal Medicine.

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Specialist areas of expertise:

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The aim of our specialist Gynaecology & Andrology clinic is to provide expert, safe, and thorough health care for males and females with Chinese medicine and optimum nutrition. Jo George, the clinic Director, has nurtured this area of expertise over the last 8 years to enhance the effectiveness of treatments given to both couples and individuals.

Whist Jo has expert knowledge of infertility issues, including supporting IUI, IVF and ART techniques, she also supports individuals who are pregnant or suffering with other gynaecological conditions. More information about areas she can assist with is listed in the LHS column.

Frequently asked questions:

How does traditional Chinese gynaecology differ from Western gynaecology?

The main difference is that Western gynaecology deals in general with 'organic' diseases, which are usually detectable by visual or microscopic examination of the tissues and organs involved. Treatment therefore consists of repair, excision, or replacement of the diseased tissue. The disadvantage of this approach is very apparent before the disease reaches a destructive stage, at which time diagnostic tests are often inconclusive.

This is where Chinese Gynaecology and Chinese Medicine are most useful, as it can perceive imbalance in the body that may not be picked up by investigative techniques. Endometriosis for example does not occur suddenly, but over the whole of a women's reproductive lifetime. In Chinese Gynaecology, clinical attention is focussed on details such as the regularity, amount, colour and texture of the menstrual flow, and any imbalances are corrected as they arise. Irregular periods, scanty flow and period pain for example are considered pathological in China, and are

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What areas of gynaecology and andrology does Chinese Herbal Medicine address?

Traditionally, there are certain disorders for which Chinese Herbal Medicine is particularly recommended; Menstrual disorders including shortened or lengthened cycle, irregularity, excessive flow or insufficient flow, amenorrhoea, dysfunctional uterine bleeding, PMT, period pain, infertility, and menopausal symptoms can all be improved by the use of Chinese Gynaecological Herbal Medicine.

Chinese herbs also have a long history of aiding and promoting male and female infertility. No individual herb is considered especially useful but instead, more than 150 different herbs are used, normally given in a complex formula of 15 herbs or more. The differences between individuals and their symptoms, accounts for the variation in the selection of the formulas and herbs used.

Although the outcome for any given individual cannot be predicted, clinical studies conducted in China suggest fertility can be aided in some cases (male and female) by Chinese herbs. Included in these statistics are cases of infertility involving obstruction of the fallopian tubes, amenorrhoea, absence of ovulation, endometriosis, uterine fibroids and a low sperm count in the male. However, it must be stressed that treatment outcome is always very individual, and western medicine may also have been included in these clinical trials.

Chinese Herbal Medicine is also used effectively to treat vaginal discharge, infection, inflammation and itching. Whilst Chinese obstetricians have relinquished supervision of delivery to Western medicine, Acupuncture has is extensively used in private practice, and in a unique NHS maternity clinic in Plymouth where nearly three thousand pregnant women have been treated. Antenatal ailments successfully treated with Acupuncture include nausea and hyper emesis, backache and sciatica, varicose veins, haemorrhoids, constipation, headaches/migraine, heartburn, carpal tunnel syndrome, oedema, abdominal pain, skin problems, anxiety, breech presentation, and the side effects of becoming a non-smoker.

Post partum difficulties including retention of the afterbirth, vaginal bleeding, fever, abdominal pain, constipation, impeded or uncontrollable urine flow, anaemia, generalised aching of the joints, and deficient and excessive lactation can also be treated, as can abdominal masses (endometriosis), prolapsed uterus, and emotional disturbances.

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What can I expect in a consultation?

Diagnosis in Chinese gynaecology does not involve a gynaecological examination as performed in Western gynaecology, although the findings of such examinations are taken into account in determining the nature of the problem. This is because the results of such an examination describes the status of the structure of the tissues while our interest is primarily in the status of the functioning of the body.

Diagnosis, therefore, mainly involves attention to the symptoms of the patient such as what kind of pain or tension she feels, where and when she experiences it, the presence or absence of thirst, perspiration, dizziness, tinnitus, emotional upset and stress. Emphasis is also placed on food intake, functioning of the bowels and urination, the menstrual flow and the patient's environment at home and at work. These findings are combined with observations of the complexion and build, the tongue, and the palpation of the pulse at both wrists.

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What happens during a treatment?

Chinese Medicine has a whole range of therapeutic techniques at its disposal, including herbs, Acupuncture, Moxibustion, diet, massage, and specialised exercises, some of which involve training in breathing. Each of these techniques is a field of a study with its own specialists. However Herbs and acupuncture are by far the most common methods of treatment that we use. During Acupuncture, needles are either inserted for a second or two, or left in place for up to 20-30 minutes, depending on the effect required. During this time there may be a heavy sensation in the limbs and a pleasant feeling of relaxation. Herbs can be taken as a decoction (like tea), in powders, pills, plasters, and syrups. The most common form is the decoction.

Following diagnosis, a standard herbal prescription is chosen for the condition, and then sculpted by adding or taking away different but related herbs until the formula matches precisely the needs and state of health of the individual patient. The effect of the prescription upon the patient is determined at the next consultation and the herbs are adjusted accordingly.

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How many treatments will I need?

Treatment with Chinese medicine can be as short as one or two weeks in cases of for example, vaginal discharge or may take up to three months for something like dysmenorrhoea, or even up to a year or longer in the treatment of infertility. While the average treatment may be slower than its Western counterpart because of the more conservative methods employed by physicians of Chinese gynaecology, and while no treatment western or Chinese, can ever claim 100% success, it is generally conceded that of all the departments of Chinese Medicine, gynaecology obtains the best results.

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