How Does TCM Fight Viruses?

TCM is peculiar in its fight against viruses. Regardless of the type of the virus, TCM first assesses symptoms of invasion of these viruses into the body, such as dizziness, thirst, fever,etc. and determines attributes of the disease (Yin and Yang, Cold and Heat, etc.) based on the symptoms, then treat the symptoms according to these attributes. So when the viruses die the disease would heal. Therefore, from the TCM perspective, there is no need to worry about updated variant of future viruses. Whenever a new virus appears, we can alwaystreat it using the same principle.

TCM treatment is usually achieved by changing internal environment (adjusting Yin, Yang and Five Elements). Therefore, eventually it is the body’s self-healing power that cures adisease. During the past few decades, Western Medicine has been studying various antibiotics to fight cold viruses. But viruses would also adapt to fight against these new antibiotics. In the end, no drugs will be left to use. This is a war that will never end.

Typhoid fever is like an unexpected catastrophe. You can’t predict when it will happen to an individual. We can only try to keep warm, enhance human immunity, and not let chill invade the body. If chill had already invaded, it must be handled properly. There’s no need to take antibiotics each time, or the chill will become source of all diseases.
When prescription of the TaiYang Disease is used to treat a cold, the speed could be very fast. I once knew a friend who was a pharmacist who was very interested in TCM and even got an American TCM license. I asked him: “Do you take Western medicine or Chinese medicine when catching a cold?” He looked at me surprisingly: “How can TCM treat cold?”

Nowadays many doctors of TCM still take Western medicine to treat a cold, the reason is they do not understand the basic TCM classic – “Treatise on Febrile Diseases”.

A male J, about 35 years old, Chinese. One day he had a fever with sore body and cough. The fever still persisted after taking Western medicine, and coughing became even more severe. After three days of torment, he came to see me. After giving him a dose of “Daqing Dragon Soup”, the fever was completely gone within about 30 minutes, so was the feeling of dull pain in his lungs.

This article is based on the content of “Deciphering TCM” by Tongmei Pan; the original book was written in Chinese.

Moxibustion at One Location Could Treat Multiple Diseases- Case: Cold & Rhinitis* (II)

Moxibustion at one location could treat multiple diseases (II)

The case of this patient was often encountered in clinic. My suspicion is it should be traced back to rhinitis or respiratory disease he had before, and moxibustion treatment happened to unearth these hidden diseases and expose them under the sun. Further inquiry confirmed my suspicion- turns out he had been afflicted by rhinitis for 7-8 years, which was sometimes better and sometimes worse.

I assured him that these manifestations showed moxibustion was effective on him. In fact it is a good opportunity to cure both his cold and rhinitis in one shot. I believe if he sticked to moxibustion for longer, these reactions would gradually decrease, and all original diseases would be cured.

So I advised him to continue moxibustion treatment; once all these reactions were eliminated through moxibustion, the diseases would be heal. There were two problems in his treatment: first, insufficient moxibustion time; and second, moxibustion was not performed thoroughly.

Despite all the adverse reactions, one should not stop moxibustion at this time. If stopped, it would give Evil a break for it to make a comeback, whose adverse effect could become even worse than this time. Such relapses are very detrimental to the diseases.

I explained to him the process of moxibustion again; this time especially emphasized that he should intensify moxibustion of Yingxiang , Yintang and Dazhui acupoints. Yingxiang is next to the nose, which is effective in treating nose diseases. Bird-pecking moxibustion could be performed, that is, the moxa stick is to be moved up and down towards this point, as in the move of a bird pecking. It should last for about 15 minutes.

Furthermore, another acupoint was added this time-Feishu, which is located on the Bladder Meridian of Foot, and effective in treating Lung Meridian and respiratory diseases, such as cough, asthma and stuffy nose. This acupoint can be used together with Yingxiang point to enhance the curative effect. Feishu is an acupoint in the back. 

Feishu acupoint
Feishu acupoint

The patient said he couldn’t figure out the precise location of the acupoints, and worry that the moxibustion would go wrong because of it.  Moxibustion carries a great advantage in that it’s not necessary for one to know the exact location of the acupoints, which is much different from acupuncture. In acupuncture, a needle is inserted into acupoints, which requires accuracy, therefore it is very difficult for people who have not studied TCM or do not understand meridians or acupoints. Moxibustion, on the other hand, involves a small area including the acupoints, so people who do not understand TCM or acupoints could perform it too. I pointed out the location of Feishu in his back, and told him to put  moxibustion box in this area next time. As long as moxibustion sense is felt in this region, it would be effective.

He followed my advice and continued moxibustion for one than week. In the end, not only was his cold cured, but also the rhinitis that had been plagued him repeatedly for years was gone. So he performed moxibustion in one place, and treated two diseases at the same time, which shows power of moxibustion. In fact the same routine could be done in the future, so as to improve immunity and prevent cold.

*These cases are selected from a book “Various Diseases Treated by Moxibustion”, written by Shan Xiamin, a renowned Chinese doctor.

**Severe adverse effect may occur, one should not perform any type of moxibustion without instruction of person of rich experience or professional.