Ian Prytherch specialises in Fertility Acupuncture and is available for appointments in Southfields SW18, Putney SW15 and Central London W1.

When it comes to getting pregnant, London women may have special challenges. (And not just because we tend to wait until our 30s and 40s.) “We are evolutionarily programmed to be less fertile during war and famine. And in London, thanks to our unbalanced go-go lifestyles, we fake war and famine very well,”

What Ian means is that the body doesn’t know the difference between a state of stress due to brutal deadlines, high-pressure business transactions, and the constant firing of Blackberries\IPhones and a real battlefield. “Women hear that stress is bad for them and that they just need to relax to get pregnant. But it’s quite ingrained in our lifestyle as well as our body chemistry,” says Ian.

More and more medical studies support acupuncture’s role as fertility-enhancer and as an IVF-supporter (by 42.5% according to Fertility and Sterility, a peer-reviewed journal). Patients who visit Ian’s clinics often go on a three-month fertility-enhancing bootcamp that’s part needlework and part (gentle) lifestyle changes. The goal is balance.

Generally speaking, acupuncture reduces inflammation, a boon for those with endometriosis; increases blood flow to the uterus, which nourishes the follicles and creates a smooth, healthy endometrium.

Acupuncture helps regulate menstrual cycles as well as the stress hormones that tell your body it’s not time for a baby.

Ian’s success rate is high, about 75 percent, though this figure isn’t something he likes to focus on, since it includes women who come to get in optimal reproductive shape and would probably get pregnant in time with or without help, as well as those using conventional medicine interventions, so he’s careful not to take all the credit. But his stats also include women that have blocked fallopian tubes or Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome.