Theory

Chinese Herbal and Acupuncture Treatment Protocols for Diarrhea - Formulas, Protocols, TCM Diagnoses


Diarrhea - Basics

Diarrhea occurs when an individual passes loose, watery stool. Acute diarrhea can last for 1-2 days, and resolve itself without medication, while chronic diarrhea can be an indicator of an underlying chronic condition. There are many causes of diarrhea, including parasites, food intolerances, reaction to medicines, intestinal disease, bacterial or viral infection, and irritable bowel syndrome.

Below you will find alternative and natural treatment options including those from a Chinese Medicine perspective for Diarrhea.


Diarrhea - Diagnostic Patterns

The Chinese Medicine treatment of diarrhea generally involves arriving at the appropriate TCM diagnosis or pattern. This pattern within the individual is what treatment is based on not the general condition (see treating the cause and not the symptoms).

The following patterns may represent the underlying contributing factors for the development of diarrhea:



Diarrhea - Acupuncture Protocols

The treatment of conditions with acupuncture can be a complicated endeavor that should only be undertaken by individuals with a deep understanding of the underlying Chinese Medicine theory (and/or whatever system being used for treatment). There are many approaches, but generally speaking few viable approaches are involved on a point to condition basis. Rather using proper diagnostic procedures the patients diagnostic pattern is ascertained and that is what is treated. The protocols listed here exemplify some of these clinical approaches.

The following Acupuncture Treatment Protocols May Be Used With Diarrhea


Diarrhea - Formulas From Our Store

The following herbal formulas are potentially useful in the process of treating diarrhea. For a complete list from our store with more details see our diarrhea formula section.


Diarrhea - Questions

Need treatment options for diarrhea and not finding the information you need?

Using our forums our staff and our community may offer guidance with regards to the treatment of diarrhea.



Diarrhea - Related Acupuncture Points

The following (23) acupuncture points may be useful for diarrhea. A subset of these could potentially be useful with acupressure stimulation and/or tongren therapy methods as well.

Generally treatment would be based on the TCM patterns listed above instead of selecting points by function alone, (see general points selection rules.)



Diarrhea - Related Chinese Herbs

The following (27) chinese herbs may be useful for diarrhea. In most cases, however, treatment with Chinese Herbal Medicine is done with herbal formulas based on the TCM patterns listed above instead of selecting herbs by function alone. When available, relevant formulas will appear below and/or in the store listings above.



The following (13) Formulas TCM Herbal Formulas May Be Useful For Diarrhea

Bao Ji Wan

  • Protect and Relieve Pills
    • Cramping and/or painful distension of the abdomen.
    • Foul smelling belching or gas with diarrhea due to heat in the intestine.
    • May alleviate some hangover symptoms.
    • Also useful to treat food poisoning. 
  • Clear Heat
  • Clear Heat From The Organs

Huo Xiang Zheng Qi Wan

  • Agastache Powder to Correct the Qi
  • Fever w/chills, chest oppression, abdominal pain, nausea, possibly vomiting and/or diarrhea, loss of taste, headache.

    The Pulse will be soggy and moderate and the Tongue will have a white greasy coating.

  • Expel Dampness
  • Transform Damp Turbidity

Qing Shu Yi Qi Tang Wan

  • Clear Summer Heat and Augment the Qi
    • Please note that there are two formulas with the same name but slightly different compositions.  One is from Wang's Wen Re Jing Wei and tonifies the yin more strongly, the other (which is the one discussed here) is from Li's Pi Wei Lun (Discussion of the Spleen and Stomach) and tonifies the spleen more strongly.  Both have similar usages but are not directly interchangeable.  
    • Clears summerheat and dries dampness - summer colds and flus, heatstroke - fever, fatigue, excessive sweating with loose stools and heaviness in the body.
    • Along with respiratory infections in the right cases certain types of asthma may be appropriate for this formula.
    • Dampheat related inflammatory condtions such as Colitis are approprirate with the right underlying factors.
    • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome with symptoms of spleen deficiency and heat.
    • Wtih the right underlying factors the range of perimenopausal symptoms may be appropriate - low libido, fatigue, water retention, fibroids, heavy cycles.  Where this appear with spleen qi deficiency signs and kidney weakness, this formula may be appropriate.
  • Clear Heat
  • Relieve Summerheat

Shen Ling Bai Zhu Wan

Si Jun Zi Tang Wan

Si Ni Tang Wan

  • Frigid Extremities Formula
  • Used for Yang Collapse in emergency situations but also to tonify Kidney Yang Deficiency in less severe cases.  Aversion to cold, very cold limbs, sensations of deep cold, fatigue, sleepiness, diarrhea with undigested food, vomiting, abdominal pain.

    The pulse will be deep and thin or deep and faint and the Tongue will be pale with a white, slippery tongue coating.

  • Warm Interior Cold
  • Rescue Devastated Yang

Tong Xie Yao Fang Wan

Wu Mei Wan

  • Mume Fruit Pill
  • Generally used with roundworms - abdominal pain, irritability, stifled chest w/heat, vomiting after eating, cold hands and/or feet.  Roundworms may be observed in vomit.

    Also has a broader application in chronic diarrhea, IBS, or other digestive disorders characterized by both heat and cold.  Symptoms may be chronic diarrhea, abdominal pain (often that is better w/heat).

    With parasites the tongue and pulse are less critical, with chronic conditions the Tongue may be red with a white coating.

  • Expel Parasites

Xiang Lian Wan

Xiang Sha Liu Jun Zi Wan

  • Aucklandia, Amomi & Six Gentlemen Pills
    • A modified version of the base, zhi zhu wan, which is used to treat qi stagnation and food retention from qi deficiency.  This modification includes herbs which add more movement and damp drying.
    • Distention and fullness in the epigastric area - bloating, indigestion, gastritis, gastric prolapse.
    • Poor appetite (from Spleen Qi Deficiency), anorexia.
  • Tonify
  • Tonify the Qi
  • Cautions
    • Avoid raw and cold food when taking this formula (and generally for Spleen Qi Deficiency).

Xiang Sha Yang Wei Wan

Xie Xin Wan

  • Drain the Epigastrium Formula
  • Signs of damp-heat with interior clumping which may settle into the abdominal region and/or rise upward to the head.  Fever, irritability, red eyes, constipation, dark urine, flushed face - middle warmer issues - jaundice, dysentery, tongue/mouth ulcers.

    Pulse will be be wiry and rapid and the Tongue will be red, swollen with a yellow greasy tongue coating.

  • Clear Heat
  • Clear Heat and Relieve Toxicity



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