Did you know that….?
Moxibustion can correct the position of a breech baby!
Between 29-32 weeks 15% of all babies will be in a breech position. This means that the baby is presenting with its buttock, knees or feet pointing to the birth canal and only 3-4% of these presentations will stay in this position until labour.
As such breech presentation is considered normal in preterm pregnancies and is not generally medically diagnosed until the last few weeks of pregnancy.
While the majority of breech babies turn spontaneously before birth, the longer a baby stays in the breech position the less likely it will be to turn of its own volition as he/she grows and space diminisces.
Moxibustion is a TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) treatment that uses the burning of a herb called Moxa or Mugwort. Moxa comes as a herbal stick that is ignited and burned over the acupoint UB 67. This point is located on the little toe on the lateral corner of the nail and is the primary point to stimulate the uterus.
According to TCM theory, moxa has a tonifying and warming effect which promotes movement and activity. The nature of heat is also to rise. This warming and raising effect is utilised to encourage the baby to become more active and shift position.
Moxibustion should be used between weeks 32 and 35, and stopped as soon as the baby as turned to avoid further movement. Application should be 10-15 minutes daily for about 10 days or till the baby turns.
No treatment is an assurance of success, but, the Kanakura et al. (2001) study reports a 92% success. Moxibustion is safe, effective and non – invasive and simple tecnique to use and is indeed worth considering for correcting a breech presentation!
England, P. & Horowitz, R (1998) Birthing From Within: An extraordinary guide to childbirth preparation (p286), Patera Press: USA
Moxibustion treatment of Breech presentation AJCM (2001) Kanakura, Kometani, Nagata et al.
The Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL)2015 Issue 5
Copyright © 2015 The Cochrane Collaboration. Published by John Wiley &Sons, Ltd.