Facial and Body Diagnosis in TCM Acupuncture Theory

The strength of Chinese medicine lies within its ability to look at a variety of signs and symptoms and come to a more precise diagnosis of underlying conditions. While the pulse and the tongue are the two principle diagnostic tools in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), looking at the colors and qualities in a persons body and face provides valuable diagnostic information.

Body Diagnosis - Shape, Demeanor and Indications

Body Shape/Demeanor


muscular/strongtend towards excess
overweighttend towards dampness
sp qi deficiency
abrubt/jerky movementswind
active movementstend towards yang conditions
withdrawn/slow movementstend towards qi a/or yang def
hunched overupper jiao def

Facial Diagnosis - Colors and Indications

Facial Colors


whitecold or def
dull whiteblood def
bright whiteqi or yang def
yellowexcess damp or sp def
orange/yellowdamp heat
+ whole face = excess
+ mallor flush = yin def
blue/green (quin)lv qi a/or blood stagnation
black/darkkd def or blood stagnation

Skin Diagnosis - Qualities and Indications

Skin Quality


moist and clearbetter prognosis
dry and lifelesspoorer prognosis

Eye Diagnosis - Qualities and Indications

Eye Qualities


dull expressionshen disturbance
unconscious movementwind
red/congested colorlv qi stagnation a/or wind-heat