China Class: Introduction (Day 1 and 2)

Hello everyone, for round one of information i'm just going to summarize some interesting points that we don't necessarily cover in class back in Calgary. There is a lot of overlap and similarity, so i'll just stick to the relatively varied information.

1. Diagnosis According to Meridians

As we know, there may be various manifestation running along courses of meridians (redness, lines, dryness, dark spots etc). If the patient feels these sensations, the channels are more sensitive and regardless, pathology is present.

- By palpating at different locations, we are able to use another tool to our valuable diagnosis. The more significant areas are as follows:

1. Back-shu points for Zang organs.

2. Front-mu points and lower-he (sea) points for Fu organs.

3. Xi-cleft points for alternative/supporting diagnosis.

- The method of palpation can be various, as long as there is even force used along meridians while doing so. The methods are as follows:

1. Sliding fingers along course of meridian, looking for subjective sensation.

2. Kneading/pressing with index finger and thumb to observe deeper course of meridian.

3. Plucking with tip of finger (moving finger left and right as if plucking a guitar string).

The first 3 methods are used on back-shu and front-mu points, while pushing with thumb-belly is used on xi-cleft points and low sacrum.

What we are looking for exactly are reaction points of course, but at the same time there may be actual nodules or depressions as well. The main manifestations include:

1. Round substances in a fixed location around G.B.20 or U.B.11 - usually more common in one-sided headache.

2. Tubercles with fixed location that would resemble more of a rice grain like shape. They are especially indicative of chronic diseases and are most common around U.B.23. Other indications may be neurosis or seminal emissions.

3. Round substances that are hard like stones, but not in a fixed location. Almost like a bean or football shape with 2 edges. Usually found by kneading. These are commonly seen in acute diseases, especially with inflammation.

4. Rope muscle; thick and hard with elasticity. Seen in chronic diseases, nothing specific.

There can be many different physical manifestations of pathology, as we know; though these are the most common types seen clinically in China.

Clinically, the order in which we palpate begins on the back with the 3 most commonly used lines - Jiaji line, first U.B.line and second U.B.line. The Jiaji line is commonly used to determine whether there is inflammation in the body while the first U.B.line is used to reflect issues of corresponding internal organs. The second U.B. line serves as a checking or supporting method to the first U.B.line. From there, we continue with front-mu and xi-cleft points to diagnose/support Fu pathology.

- In addition to the actual points, we may look at the body in terms as systems, much like Western medicine does. Again, the systems are reflected on the back 3 lines and we are looking for reaction points. There are also corresponding points on the front.

Focuses:

1. Respiration: T3, T5, T11, LU1, Ren17.

2. Urination: T5-T7, L2, Sacrum. U.B.23, U.B.28.

3. Digestion: T5,T6,T9,T12. U.B.18, U.B.20, U.B.25, U.B.27.

4. Metabolism: T4,T5.

5. Nerve: T4-T9. L2. U.B.13, U.B.14, U.B.23.

6. Integumentary: T1, T3, T7, T9, U.B.13, U.B.20, U.B.23, L.I.11, SP10.

7. Gynecological: U.B.15, U.B.18, U.B.19, U.B.23, Ren3, SP6.

I know there is overlap with some of the points; for example when I state U.B.13 and T3. Although this is where U.B.13 is at the same level, the redundancy is present due to the fact that we are still palpating on the other lines in addition to that location.

* Remember, this is only one diagnostic method. We don't use this alone to make diagnosis - this is a valuable tool to help with other methods and can help to support other complaints or objective findings. *

I hope this information is valuable to those of you who are curious of using this method as another tool in our ever-growing arsenal. Again, much of this is based on what we have learned in class and to some of us it may seem like nothing new in regards to what we have already learned. Either way, it's handy to have at our discretion should we choose to use it.

Fun Fact: U.B.24 (a.k.a Qi Hai Shu) is actually used in clinical practice quite often as it is the posterior reflection of Ren 6 (Qi Hai). The effects are quite significant in treatment, and the most common indication is for tonifying qi - much like Ren 6 as the Sea of Qi.

Feel free to give any feedback or ask any further questions if I was lacking clarity in any areas. Cheers!