Acupuncture for Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) - Treatment Protocols

Acu Protocols

Below you will find some of the more common tcm diagnoses and acupuncture treatment protocols for premenstrual syndrome (PMS). There are many ways to treat this condition with Eastern Medicine and our presentation is only one of many possible options.

PMS most commonly manifests with the physical components of fatigue a/or edema as well as the mental components of depression, irritability, sensitivity a/or insomnia.

  • Etiology & Pathology:
    • Differentiation:
    • LV Qi Stagnation
      • Signs & Symptoms:
        • Headache, breast tenderness, depression, irritability.
        • Tongue: Normal or purplish
        • Pulse: Wiry
      • Treatment Principle:
        • Harmonize LV Qi
      • Treatment Points:
        • Valaskatagis Point Selection:
        • UB 18 - LV Shu
        • UB 19 - GB Shu
        • LV 3 - harmonize LV, smooth emotions
        • SP 6 - tonify Qi, reinforce LV 3
        • Giovanni Point Selection:
        • Differentiated as LV Qi Stagnation leading to LV Fire Rising - abdominal distention, breast tenderness before menstruation, irritability, clumsiness, moodiness, depression.
        • LV 3 - harmonize LV, smooth emotions
        • GB 34 - move Qi in costal area, support LV 3
        • GB 41 - move Qi in costal area
        • SP 6 - tonify Qi and Blood
        • TH 6 - works w/GB 34 to move Qi in the costal area
        • PC 6 - works w/LV 3 to benefit the emotions
    • SP/KD Yang Deficiency
    • HT/SP Deficiency
      • Signs & Symptoms:
      • Treatment Principle:
        • Tonify SP
        • Tonify HT
        • Calm the Spirit
      • Treatment Points:
    • Phlegm Fire Rising Upwards
      • Signs & Symptoms:
        • Strong symptoms w/emotional component, agitation, slightly manic, depression, aggresiveness, red face.
        • Tongue: Red w/greasy tongue coat
        • Pulse: Slippery, rapid
      • Treatment Principle:
        • Resolve Phlegm
        • Clear Heat
        • Calm the Mind
      • Treatment Points:
    • LV Blood Deficiency
      • Signs & Symptoms:
        • Often seen combined with LV Qi Stagnation.
        • Depression, weepiness before menstruation, breast tenderness possible, fatigue, pale/dull complexion, dizziness, depression, scanty periods.
        • If the HT is involved - poor memory, insomnia a/or disturbed sleep.
        • Tongue: Pale or slightly pale on the edges
        • Pulse: Thin or choppy, possibly wiry in the LV position
      • Treatment Principle:
        • Harmonize LV
        • Tonify Blood
        • Tonfiy SP
      • Treatment Points:
    • LV/KD Yin Deficiency
      • Signs & Symptoms:
        • More common in perimenopausal women.
        • Slight breast distention, irritability, sore back a/or knees, dizziness, blurred vision, dry eyes a/or throat, heat in the 5 palms.
        • Tongue: Red w/no coat
        • Pulse: Floating, empty
      • Treatment Principle:
        • Tonify LV Yin
        • Tonify KD Yin
        • Harmonize LV
      • Treatment Points:

The information on our site is drawn from our own lecture notes and clinical experience. The following lecture notes were consulted within this section:

  • St. John, Meredith: New England School of Acupuncture, Etiology and Pathology Lecture Notes
  • Valaskatgis, Peter: New England School of Acupuncture, Etiology and Pathology Lecture Notes

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