TCM classifies male infertility into six categories:
1. Kidney Yang Deficiency
Symptoms: coldness, fatigue, pale bright face, copious clear urine
2. Kidney Yin Deficiency
Symptoms: nights sweats, anxiety, irritability, fidgety
3. Liver Qi Stagnation
Symptoms: emotional and physical imbalance
Symptoms: scanty urine, fullness in hypogastrium
5. Qi and Blood Deficiency
Symptoms: fatigue, chronic illness
6. Heart and Spleen Deficiency
Symptoms: insomnia, palpitation, poor appetite
TCM recognises endometrioses, fibroids, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and premature ovarian failure (POF).
Endometrioses and fibroids are characterised by inappropriate tissue growth within the reproductive system, causing damage to the reproductive organs and preventing conception. In TCM, they are both considered processes of stagnated uterine blood.
PCOS is the most frequent endocrine-related problem in women of child-bearing age and presents itself in numerous ways: irregular menstruation, ovulationrelated infertility, polycystic ovaries, excess male hormones, etc. POF involves the loss of ovary function before 40 years of age. In TCM, they are both manifestations of hormonal imbalance.
Photo courtesy of Thinkstock. This article first appeared in NATURA magazine issue No.6. Find NATURA at Eu Yan Sang retail outlets, newsstands and major bookstores in Singapore.