The use of moxibustion (Moxa) to address breech presentation has been used in Chinese hospitals and private clinics for decades. In fact the use of moxabustion applied to Zhiyin (BL67) regarding difficult labour was first recorded in the Moxabustion Method for Emergencies by Wenren Qinian in 1226.
It is a simple treatment, we use the heat from Moxa to stimulate the acupoint BL67 on the little toe. It aims to increase fetal activity thus encouraging correct position for the baby.
If the baby is breech, transverse or any other non-optimal presentation, 34 weeks is generally considered the optimum time for this treatment. Clinically we have found that the baby needs to have a bit of room to move and to be in the fetal position, with no stretched out legs, to get the best results.
Traditional Chinese medicine treatment for breech presentation involves acupuncture and moxabustion at a point on the side of the little toe called Zhiyin (see image below).
You will be taught how to do Moxa so you or your support person can confidently carry out treatment at home for the next week. We will then touch base again for more acupuncture, and if the baby has not turned, home moxa will resume for another week.
Here are some clinical studies if you’re interested:
“Using moxibustion in primary healthcare to correct non-vertex presentation: a multicentre randomised controlled trial.” Published in the BMJ Medical Jornal 2013. It found that moxibustion at acupuncture point BL67 is effective and safe to correct non-vertex presentation when used between 33 and 35 weeks of gestation. We believe that moxibustion represents a treatment option that should be considered to achieve version of the non-vertex fetus READ MORE
“Acupuncture plus moxibustion to resolve breech presentation: a randomized controlled study.” Published by the Journal of Fetal Maternal and Neonatal Medicine 2003. This study looked at correcting fetal breech presentation with the stimulation of the acupoint BL67 by moxibustion or acupuncture. The study concluded that acupuncture and moxibustion is effective in revolving foetuses that are in the breech position. READ MORE
“Moxibustion for Correction of Breech Presentation”
Published in the Journal of the American Medical Association1998. This study showed that 98 (75.4%) of the 130 fetuses in the intervention group were cephalic at birth.READ MORE