Prebirth Acupuncture with Sarah Folwell

Sarah Folwell is a Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioner and Remedial Massage Therapist (with many years experience in Pregnancy Massage).  One of the many services Sarah offers is prebirth acupuncture.  ITC asked Sarah to explain what this means.  Take it away Sarah….

What is Prebirth Acupuncture?

Prebirth Acupuncture refers to a series of Acupuncture treatments (generally 4 treatments performed once per week commencing at 35 weeks). These treatments focus on preparing women physically and psychologically for childbirth, and also aim to address discomforts they may be experiencing.

Acupuncture in pregnancy generally involves a minimal number of Acupoints, applied either sidelying or seated.

It is known that women seek out Acupuncture treatment for a wide range of pregnancy related complaints such as: Back or Pelvic pain, Depression, Insominia, Breech Presentation and more.

In fact, in other countries, women are able to receive acupuncture treatment from midwives within hospital clinics.

One study performed by prominent New Zealand Midwife and Acupuncturist Debra Betts concluded that women that received Prebirth Acupuncture observed:

– 35% reduction in medical inductions

– 31% reduction in the rate of epidurals used

– 32% reduction in emergency Caesarian delivery

– 9% increase in normal vaginal birth

This observational study mirrors the feedback given by midwives that Prebirth Acupuncture provides promising therapeutic benefits in assisting women to have normal vaginal births.

There is also research demonstrating that there is no increased incidence of adverse events when receiving Acupuncture in pregnancy.

Pregnant? Find out if Acupuncture can help you! 


– Park J et al. The Safety of Acupuncture during Pregnancy: a systematic review. Acupunct Med 2014;32(3):257-66

– Clarkson C et al. Adverse Event reporting in studies of penetrating Acupuncture during pregnancy: a systematic review 2015

– Betts. D, Mcmullan. J, &Walker. L (2016). The use of Maternity Acupuncture within New Zealand public Hospital: Integration within an Outpatient Clinic. New Zealand College of Midwives Journal, 52, 45-49.

– Mortenson. L, Kvist LJ, Hermansson E. A National Study of how Acupuncture is currently used in Midwifery Care at Swedish Maternity units. Midwifery 2011;27(1):87e92.

– Betts. D, Lennox. S (2006) Acupuncture for Prebirth treatment: An Observational Study of its use in Midwifery Practice. Medical Acupuncture Vol. 17#3. May 2006

Contact Details

Address: 1/46 Burns Bay Road Lane Cove
Mobile: 0404 189 544
Website: Sarah Folwell
Sarah Folwell is an ITC Gold Supporter and without the support of our advertisers ITC could not undertake the community and advocacy work we do.
Every patient should seek advice from their Medical Professional to confirm the procedure is appropriate for their particular circumstances.