Engaging Vitality: An Approach to More Effective Engagement with Qi
Engaging Vitality: An Approach to More Effective Engagement with Qi Dan Bensky and Charles Chace
EJOM Vol. 9 No. 1 (2018)
This article describes an approach to qi palpation based on osteopathy called Engaging Vitality. The central premise of Engaging Vitality work is that if the concept of qi is to be taken seriously then it should be palpable. In osteopathy the process of appreciating the human body is known as listening, a term that combines a sensibility of critical evaluation with mindful and empathetic attunement. The Engaging Vitality approach employs a repertoire of palpatory techniques drawn from osteopathy to help acupuncturists listen to the qi more effectively, to set their own preconceptions aside and simply respond to what the qi is trying to tell them.
The Role of the 24-Hour Cycle of Qi in the Diagnosis and Treatment of Insomnia
The Role of the 24-Hour Cycle of Qi in the Diagnosis and Treatment of Insomnia Peter Mole
EJOM Vol. 8 No. 4 (2016)
Chronic insomnia is extremely common. Many of our patients suffer from it and report it as their main complaint or as a secondary complaint. The 24-Hour Cycle of Qi is no longer to be found in contemporary Chinese medical literature but it can provide useful information to help with the diagnosis and treatment of insomnia. The main TCM books also make no distinction between patterns that commonly cause insomnia and those that are extremely rare.
The Use of Entry and Exit Points for the Face and Thorax
The Use of Entry and Exit Points for the Face and Thorax Jonathan Shubs
EJOM Vol. 8 No. 4 (2016)
The flow of meridians was first described in the Spiritual Pivot Chapter 10 giving a specific order in which the meridians follow from one to the other. This order is often also referred to as the Chinese biorhythm or Chinese clock. Its uses are found in Five Element acupuncture to suggest when is the best time to treat a particular meridian, and in other styles such as Tung and Balance Method where it is applied to balancing various meridians. It is rarely used in its capacity to treat the symptoms that can appear along the meridians themselves and their connections to other meridians. The aim of this article is to offer a different approach to the use of entry and exit points, to treat problems of the thorax and the face.
The Difference between the Pharynx and the Larynx in Chinese Medicine
Yubin Lu, Qin Chu and Li Lu
EJOM Vol. 7 No. 6 (2014)
The pharynx and the larynx are two important structures of the human body with totally different natures and significances to human life. Due to the translators' lack of knowledge about Chinese medical theories, many important symptoms involving these two structures are simply translated as a pathology of the 'throat'. For example, when there is an invasion of Wind Heat, 'sore throat' is a common symptom. Yin deficiency also presents 'dry throat' as a result of loss of nourishment. These kinds of terms ignore the differences between 'pharynx' and 'larynx' and thus do not correctly express or carry the information behind these terms in Chinese medicine.
Nan Jing Difficulty One: Pulse Diagnosis and the Use of the Right Distal Position
William R. Morris
EJOM Vol. 5 No. 6
This article expands upon pulse diagnostic ideas discussed in Chapter One of the Nan Jing. The global view of the right distal position that is presented in Chapter One can be explored from the perspective of other chapters within the Nan Jing as well as from perspectives generated from contemporary practice. Nan Jing Chapter One discusses the use of the right distal position as a method of diagnosing the conditions for the whole person. The right distal pulse position is said to be the meeting place of all the vessels and is the source of all vessel movements from within the ‘Great Abyss’ or the ‘Big Source’ (Lu 9 tai yuan). This investigation explores four applications of Chapter One, based on pulse qualities and depths, and the finger rolling and organ clock methods.
Teaching Chinese Pulse Images: The Three Step System of Chinese Pulse Reading
Frances Turner EJOM Vol. 5 No. 4
This article starts by outlining the challenge of pulse diagnosis and the problems that can arise in getting to grips with the 28+ pulses of Chinese medicine. It goes on to offer a way of meeting this challenge: the Three Step System of Chinese Pulse Reading. It presents the Three Steps in a systematic and simple way, highlighting confusions that can arise in the translation of Chinese pulse images into English, and shows how the Three Step System can make accessible a subject that sometimes seems difficult and unapproachable. Read the whole article
Fire – A ‘Lighter’ Perspective
Gerad Kite EJOM Vol. 4 No. 6
This article, written from the perspective of a Five-Element practitioner and teacher, begins with an account of his experience of the Fire element and its significance for him personally. It moves on to give the classical context of the author’s understanding of the Fire element, outlining the roles of the four Fire Officials (heart, small intestine, heart protector and three heater). The Five-Element approach to treatment is then illustrated using two vividly portrayed and sharply contrasting examples of patients with Causative Factors in the Fire element, addressing the diagnosis, treatment and outcome in each case. Read the whole article
What is the Great Mystery of the Point Yin Tang?
Dr Holmes Kaikobad EJOM Vol. 4 No. 6
This article explains the nature of the point yin tang explaining its critical location in relation to certain energy meridians of the body and how these meridians or channels connect to the heart yang. All these channels carry some aspect of the Fire element that is by nature yang, heated and red, and thus the area – situated on the most visible part of the face becomes a sensitive reflector of the most visible kind of body qi. The possible colour and textural changes at yin tang are discussed along with possible diagnoses and treatment strategies.
Modern Research on Traditional Chinese Pulse Diagnosis
Lisheng Xu, Kuanquan Wang and David Zhang EJOM Vol. 4 No. 6
This paper presents modern research on Traditional Chinese Pulse Diagnosis (TCPD). In order to demystify TCPD and prove its efficiency, some fundamental knowledge such as concepts, significance, diagnosis methods, and standard pulse patterns are outlined at the outset. Then we review modern research on TCPD mainly from four aspects: objectifying TCPD, analysis of pulse waveform, the mechanism of pulse formation, clinical observations and comparisons of pulses. For each of these aspects, general background information and brief explanations are given. In particular, it is very important to distinguish the pulse images based on traditional Chinese medicine and those derived from the sphygmogram based on western medicine. As an example, our pulse acquisition system is presented. Furthermore, typical pulse waveforms in our pulse database and their results as processed by modern signal processing methods are demonstrated. Finally, the potential and the problems facing modern research into TCPD are pointed out.
This article – drawn from the book Shen – Psychological Aspects of Chinese Medicine: the Classics & Contemporary Practice (currently in translation) – examines the various pathologies associated with emotional illness, paying particular attention to their links to fire. The concepts of constraint (yu) and stagnation (zhi) of qi, fire (huo), phlegm (tan), blood stasis (xueyu), empty fire and ‘restlessness and agitation’ (fanzao) are discussed with reference to classical Chinese texts by authorities such as Liu Wansu, Li Dongyuan and Zhu Danxi.
The Experience of Receiving Traditional Chinese Acupuncture
G Walker, B de Valois, T Young, R Davies, and J Maher EJOM Vol. 4 No. 5
This article reports on a study by the Supportive Oncology Research Team at Lynda Jackson Macmillan Centre, Mount VernonHospital, Northwood, Middlesex, to evaluate the experience of women with breast cancer having treatment for the menopausal symptoms associated with Tamoxifen. A total of 16 women participated in focus groups held at least 9 months after their last acupuncture treatment. The discussions addressed the following topics: problems experienced before treatment; anticipation and expectation; experiences of the treatment session itself; effects of treatment; and overall impressions. It was found that traditional acupuncture is an acceptable treatment for women with menopause-like symptoms resulting from Tamoxifen. Patients found the overall experience enjoyable, and felt that their quality of life improved whether or not their symptoms were relieved.
An Introduction to Keiraku Chiryo - Japanese Meridian Therapy
Stephen Birch EJOM Vol. 4 No. 5
The article describes the system of Japanese traditional acupuncture - Keiraku Chiryo or meridian therapy - which is a form of acupuncture that has been practised for over 60 years. When it was introduced into Europe in the 1950s it had been virtually unknown outside of Japan. In the last 15 years it has established a place for itself in the US, Australasia and Europe and is being taught in postgraduate workshops and training programmes in these places. The author has studied with a number of leading meridian therapists since 1988, principally with instructors of the Toyohari or ‘east Asian needle therapy’ school of meridian therapy, in particular Kodo Fukushima, Toshio Yanagishita, Akihiro Takai and Shozo Takahashi.In this article he explains the development, basic theories, diagnostic and treatment methods and patterns of meridian therapy.
Lurking Evil - Changes That Happen When You Treat Children
Julian Scott EJOM Vol. 3 No. 6
This is a case history outlining the deep changes that can occur when a sick child receives acupuncture. The patient is a 13 months old boy seriously ill with asthma, who was already on heavy doses of steroids and who had had seven 10-day courses of antibiotics in the previous 5 months. The case history covers his road to recovery through a healing crisis which led to no further attacks of asthma.
Shonishin (children's needle therapy) is a style of acupuncture used on children that developed over 250 years ago in Japan [Yoneyama, Mori (1964)]. Recognising the fact that children do not like being needled, this therapy has developed specialised treatment techniques, many of which are non-invasive and thus not uncomfortable or frightening to the child. Specialised instruments have been developed for treating children, and great care has been taken in adapting the use of acupuncture and related techniques for the treatment of children. In this article the author briefly discusses some of these methods and presents a couple of cases to illustrate their application.
Feeling the Pulse: Trial to Assess Agreement Level among TCM Students
Sean Walsh, Deirdre Cobbin, Karen Bateman and Chris Zaslawski EJOM Vol. 3 No. 5
This paper reports a study designed to investigate the agreement between TCM students in their discrimination of basic pulse parameters such as speed, depth, volume, length and overall quality of the pulse. Method: a standardised form was used to assess agreement among the sample of students on three occasions: at the beginning of formal pulse diagnosis teaching classes (week 1), at the conclusion of pulse teaching (week 14), and one year later. Students were randomly divided into two groups, with each group randomly assigned three subjects, for whom each member of the group was required to palpate the pulse. Data were analysed using Chi square.
Brewer presents his personal view of changes in patterns of lower back pain presented over the last 25 years. It appears that the causes of lower back pain vary with the type of patient seen, for example Chinese in China may match the 'text book' models, however when working in western society this is clearly not the case. In fact much of the lower back pain presented is caused by retardation in the flow of qi rather than pathogenic factors. This leads to stiffness with the result that the muscle is more prone to spasm. Brewer presents a very clear list of signs and symptoms and discusses them from TCM and western physiology perspective. He describes thorough examination by palpation, the use of distal and local points and methods of needling.
In this article, the author discusses what he believes to be the main obstacles for Western practitioners learning and using Chinese pulse examination in their practice. According to the author, this main obstacle is a pedagogical one and a tendency not to memorise the key information to a high enough degree of certainty to make that information clinically reliable. He believes that mastery of pulse examination for making a correct TMC pattern discrimination is even more important for Western practitioners than for our Chinese counterparts. This is because, in his experience, Western practitioners are faced with patients who present, not with one textbook pattern or another, but with a combination of three, four or even five patterns. Chinese pulse diagnosis does not presuppose any exceptional, little known, paranormal endowment or ability in the person applying it. All that is required is a solid grounding in its coherent theory and a trained and well-kept hand. Read the whole article
Pressing the Vessels
Rory Kerr EJOM Vol. 2 No. 3
The author writes about the importance of pulse diagnosis as an 'information centre' giving guidelines on interpreting the pulse. His article is illustrated with a detailed chart on 'The Pulse Qualities'.
This article is an account of the impact of alternative diagnostic methods, particularly those of Applied Kinesology (AK) on a complementary medicine practice. The history and theory of AK is outlined along with its application an an acupuncture practice and a case history.
A detailed description of changes that take place on the ear to indicate diseases. Diagnosis can be carried out in three ways: by observation, palpation and electric measurement. Translated by Xy Zhang.
An article on the ancient Chinese art of face reading. This outlines the history of this special skill. The basic facial types according to five elements are discussed. Particular attention is paid to the significance of eyes and four case histories with diagrams are considered.
Aspects of Clinical Reasoning in the Practice of TCM
Chris Zaslawski EJOM Vol. 2 No. 3
Clinical reasoning is an important aspect underlying the diagnostic methods of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). Over the last four decades research has suggested that there are three different models that are indicative of the cognitive aspects of clinical reasoning. This paper examines these three processes, these being hypothetico-deductive reasoning, systematic scanning and pattern recognition and puts them in context of traditional Chinese medicine. It also examines the nature and characteristics of expertise and its role in the clinical reasoning process.
Looking at the Evidence: Notes on Diagnosis and the Evaluation of Efficacy in TCM
Gianfranco Morelli and Patrizia Adelasco EJOM Vol. 1 No. 5
The authors discuss the work of Dr. Zhang Shijie, of Gulou Hospital, Beijing. Dr Zhang, one of the forty ming lao zhong yi (famous Chinese doctors) emphasises the complexity of differential diagnosis and in seven case histories he demonstrates his thinking and subsequent treatment. This article first appeared in the Italian journal, MediCina. The English translation is by Emelia Mills and Kara Smith.
Tuina and Chinese Herbal Medicine in the Treatment of Childhood Anorexia
Hao Zhen and Wang Engui EJOM Vol. 1 No. 5
Hao Zhen and Wang Engui, of the Department of Paediatrics at the Affiliated Hospital of Beijing College of Acu-moxibustion and Orthopaedics, discuss their treament, which combines tuina (massotherapy) and herbal medicine. They illustrate points on the hand which are massaged to stimulate spleen and stomach activity and give their herbal treatments for specific problems. Translated by Chao Baixiao.
Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME) - A Japanese Perspective: Some Conclusions from a Pilot Study
Gretchen De Soriano EJOM Vol. 1 No. 4
A short retrospective pilot study shows that ME follows the pattern described in the Shang Han Lun, a traditional Chinese medical text. The Shang Han Lun describes the symptom patterns and treatment for acute diseases using diagnostic techniques based on the six divisions, while its sequel, the Jin Gui Yao Lue, describes those for chronic disease using diagnostic techniques based on the three substances.The article suggests that significant understanding towards relief from the suffering of ME can be achieved using these Kanpo diagnostic techniques which are explained using modern Japanese commentaries on the original text.
Many schools of thought have flourished in Japan since Chinese medicine was introduced 1,200 years ago. Unique evolved practice includes abdominal diagnosis and treatment - toxins in the abdomen are declared the source of all human ills - and point location by direct palpation rather than by visual observation of anatomical structures. Rigorous practical application is superior to book learning. Read the whole article