Cupping Hijama Times Volume 2 - October 2011
International Cupping Society – Free Publication
INTRODUCTION Welcome to this second edition of Cupping/Hijama times. The International Cupping Society - membership continues to grow and we see this medical treatment is being practiced by more and more therapists as patients continue to gain benefit. We see that people throughout the world are returning to this age old treatment as it is simple- safe if carried out by those specifically trained, and the benefit is that it allows the body to heal itself without the use of expensive often fruitless drugs and medications. All those practicing wet cupping have the onus upon them to educate their medical colleagues this treatment truly is a God send and they can benefit their patients immensely by learning or referring their patients onto those that practice it. We thank you for your patience and ask you all to work with us to take this treatment to all of mankind. Enjoy this edition and don't forget top submit for the next edition Dr.T.Shaban - Chairman Dr.M.Ravalia - Assistant Chair
What is the ICS The ICS holds an international register of qualified cupping therapists. All are members of the ICS and adhere to the Code of Ethics. ____________________________________________ Advantages of Being a recognized ICS Member The ICS is the only independent body that exists NOT for profit but for the benefit of practitioners and their associations. The ICS is a body with a Voluntary Self Regulation (VSR) Council framework to help therapists,
___________________________________ ICS Philosophy - Why we are different
We are non profit making and therefore have only your interests at heart. We champion the preservation of all holistic values not to be compromised by bureaucratic regulation. We support meaningful voluntary self regulation where the VSR Council created by the therapy peers maintains control. This protects the therapy associations and practitioners as well as the public. We embrace and support complementary schools and clinics that meet our criteria. The ICS Council IS the membership, not a separate body.
Code of Ethics The International Cupping Society has the right to expect that all of its members conduct their professional activities in accordance with the Code of Ethics of the Society.
All practitioners and therapists must have appropriate Training and follow appropriate cross infection control procedures, to ensure a safe and hygienic environment for themselves, their colleagues and their clients. The following are some of the basic standards required and are considered the minimum standards expected by the Society for all its members:
Hepatitis B Immunisation First aid kit is required . Clean and hygienic conditions. Waste Disposal Procedures are sufficient and follow the law of the relevant country. Relevant Sharps disposal and clinical waste. All work materials such as chairs surfaces, and tables are thoroughly cleaned using a suitable disinfectant between patients and at the end of each working day and after any spillage on the surface. The skin in the area of the cupping site must be appropriately cleansed. Before conducting the cupping procedure, the practitioner will wash their hands and forearms with soap and hot water, drying with clean disposable towels. Gowns and towels must be changed and cleaned after each use and free from stains as appropriate. Cups and other disposable instruments must be prepackaged and presterilized and only applied once, after which appropriate disposal in a puncture and leak-proof box, and its contents must be disposed of in a manner authorized for clinical waste. Hands must be cleaned with antibacterial soaps between each patient. Use of disposable gloves during cupping. Therapists must not overcharge, mislead or continue to treat patients for prolonged treatment courses without beneficial treatment results. Controlled infectious disease which require hospitalisation, cancer treatment and other serious diseases should not be offered as a replacement to conventional medical treatment. Patients must be advised to fast for a minimum of three hours before treatment. Therapists must be trustworthy to their patients, not misguide, nor give unqualified advice. Therapists must not advise patients to stop medication or other medical treatments without first consulting with their physician.
Therapists must give their complete attention when treating a patient and provide safe and suitable treatments to the best of their ability. Attention must be taken by members not to give incorrect results about the success of treatments or to say that any treatment is a total cure in every case without clear evidence. Members will be asked occasionally to attend additional optional education seminars and lectures appropriate to maintain with current professional standards. Membership to be renewed on an annual basis subject to compliance with the Society's Code of Ethics
SURVEY RESULTS: How painful, sore and scarring is Hijama? Further to the survey that we conducted between 16 October, 2010 to 7 January, 2011, here are results finally, apologies for the delay as we had a few technical problems collating and presenting the data.
62 people took part in the survey, thank you to all who took part. Results are as follows, note that the top answer in each multiple-choice question is highlighted bold:
1) Have you ever had hijama therapy? YES.........61 NOT YET..... 1
2) What is / was your PERCEIVED pain score out of 10 BEFORE you had hijama therapy for the first time ? (1 being HARDLY painful and 10 being VERY PAINFUL) SCORE - RESPONSES - PERCENTAGE
1.............17..............27% 2..............6..............10% 3..............4...............6% 4..............4...............6% 5..............8..............13%
6..............3...............5% 7..............9..............15% 8..............8..............13% 9..............2...............3% 10.............1...............2%
3) What was your ACTUAL pain score out of 10 AFTER you had hijama therapy for the first time ? (1 being HARDLY painful and 10 being VERY PAINFUL) SCORE RESPONSES PERCENTAGE
1..............25..............40% 2..............10..............16% 3...............9..............15% 4...............9..............15% 5...............5...............8% 6...............0...............0% 7...............2...............3% 8...............1...............2% 9...............1...............2% 10..............0...............0% 4) Did you feel sore after the hijama therapy? Please select one which is most relevant
A) Yes, and the pain was unbearable / for an unacceptable length of time...3...5% B) Yes, but the pain was negligible / only for minimal amount of time..32..52% C) No, any pain during treatment completely faded at the end...6..10% D) No, no pain or soreness felt after the treatment...20..33%
5) Did hijama therapy leave scarring marks on your skin that are still visible? Please select one which is most relevant
A) Yes, the marks are unacceptable...2...3% B) Yes, but the marks are negligible..12..20% C) No, any marks have completely faded..30..49% D) No, no scarring marks resulted from my treatment..17..28%
6) Any other comments?: Please add anything else you may want to with regards to the pain, soreness and scarring from hijama therapy We had a good mix of comments, a selection of which is given below. Thanks once again to all who made these interesting comments. - "Thanks to Allah , I always feel relief and rest after hijama.. It is an ideal treatment that Mohamed PBUH choosed for us.." - "I have the opportunity of having Hijama done by two different therapists. The first experience was almost painless as compared to the Second one. My Personal observation is that MAYBE, repeat , MAYBE it depends upon the types of cuts applied to the skin. I have had it done on my back for lower back pain. The First therapist probably made LONG CUTS, whereas the Second one made small, small ones !!. Or it can be the pressure applied by individuals.wabs.." - "I thank Allah (SWT) for giving me the chance to do Hijama. It has changed my life completely and my health is so much better. It is important to have Aqeedah that YOU WILL GET CURED - only then will Hijama work for you. First few days after hijjama its uncomfortable. There is intense itching once the scar marks are healing. Black seed oil (zayt habbatus sauda') was used to heal the site of hijama, and it's effect very good, better than Bethadine solution. This is my experience since 3 years ago. Alhamdulillah." - "When the hijama began a cup was being moved around all over my back. That was agony. I think I had to ask for it to be stopped in the end. My son who had hijamah in Egypt said that it wasn't necessary to do that procedure anyway. The rest of the
cupping was relatively painless." - "Minimal pain and very refreshing therapy. liberating and made me feel excellent for days." - "Itchy feeling at local site". - "The cure of Allah, with no doubt will have no negative effect on an individual. I personally have been studying hijamah for a year now, and not one of my patience or even myself have complained about it. hijammah is practiced by us, but the cure is from Allah". - "This may look and sound simple in term of cure.No drug being use at all. The cure is immediate and you can see and witness the result. Eg, you have high level of blood pressure- when occurring the blurred vision, the doctor will normally prescribe aspirin or heparin or warfarin the family of drug for thinning the blood- Just give an immediate bloodcupping on the head between the neck - Believing is seeing - Result on the spot. This happen to my brother. Will write more if time and place permits. - A K Mohamed - "Pain of Hijamah incisions is just like the bite of an insect, it also depends on the depth of incisions, an experienced Hijamah therapist can control & reduce the pain perfectly. The scalpel / blade should be extremely sharp, so as to open the epidermis with the minimum hand pressure. I use Scalpel # 22, which I have found the best in sharpness, it gives a good grip to Hejama therapist for controlling the incision depth."
The History of Cupping Sharon Baird Cupping is an ancient method of causing local congestion, were a vacuum is created with the use of vessels, which are placed on the skin either by means of heat or suction, which then draws up the underlying tissues. When the cups are left in place on the skin for a few minutes, blood stasis is formed and localized healing takes place. Cupping is considered with others to be the oldest natural healing therapies. History tells us about Archaeologists who found evidence of cupping therapy being practiced from as early as 3000 B.C. Also in the evidence that was uncovered there were documents supporting the application of the cupping vessels and instruments used on the body as therapeutic procedure? The earliest record of cupping is around 1,550 B.C. by the Egyptians .This document was called Ebers Papyrus; one of the oldest medical textbooks in the world, which was dated by the material it was written on, called papyrus, this papyrus like paper was prepared in ancient Egypt from the pithy stem of a water plant. The Papyrus like paper was also widely used throughout the ancient Mediterranean world in the writing of important documents. Anthropologists also found evidence in China of cupping dating as far back as 1,000 B.C. The history of Chinese cupping is a long history of healing and innovation. It was an ancient Taoist medical practice was widely used in the courts of Imperial China. Its administration was first documented by Ge Hong, in an ancient article called Handbook of Prescriptions for Emergencies. Ge Hong was a practicing Taoist, an alchemist, and a medicinal herbalist. He was famous for his accomplished of being a healer and a trusted confidante of many high officials in ancient China. Ge Hong along with other medicine men used animal horns for cupping. That is why in some medical articles of the empire, cupping was referred to as the horn technique of healing. This led researchers to believe that cupping was indeed a Chinese invention and its practice was older than stated in recorded history. This ancient method has been proven effective against common disorders associated with the pulmonary system. The Chinese expanded the use of the cupping technique to surgery, this was called wet cupping. Other ancient cultures including the Egyptians and early Greeks are all embraced the therapeutic value of cupping. Hippocrates (c. 400 B.C.) used cupping for internal disease and structural problems. Hippocrates was known as the Father of Modern Medicine, during this golden era of
the early Greek state Hippocrates and his followers were devoted to an empiric approach to healing and sought naturalistic explanations of why people became ill. The Cupping technique soon spread through the medicine world, throughout Asian and European civilizations. Each country is having their own name for cupping therapy and having their own methods of cupping. Here are some of the names that cupping is referred to in other cultures; Hijamah / Hijama / Baguanfa / jiaofa, / Bentusa, / Vendouse, Gac Hoi /, Bahnkes, Kyukaku, / Ventosaterapia, / SchrÖpftherapie, / Kupa Cekme, / Jiaofa,/ Bankovani, / Ventouzzes, and Vacuume Terapi. History also tells us of the cupping devices used in conducting the cupping technique. In the ancient scrolls , anthropologists deciphered and described from the scriptures of how hollow animal horns were used and oral suction was applied to create a vacuum to drain toxins and draw out illnesses, whether they were bites, stings, infections or any other forms of disease in that era. With the pointed end of the horn pierced the horn was then placed on the surface of the skin. The vacuum was then created by orally sucking the air out of the horn through the hole. when the vacuum was achieved, the end of the horn was then sealed with a wad of dried grass which would be immediately placed into the opening by the nimble workings of the tongue, another way to cause suction was for the medicine men to burn dry leaves or paper which would place it inside the horn to produce suction and left until the heat dissipates. History also tells us that not only was cupping used for healing but they also had beliefs about what could enter the body and mind, such as evil spirits which could cause pain and suffering. Many researchers including anthropologists described how healers of these super naturalistic traditions applied oral suction to the surface of the body to withdraw the effects of these evil influences. Through all the different cultures and civilisations different forms of cupping vessels were used. Along shoreline of the west coast of North America, Vancouver Island, sea shells were used, In Europe, Asia, Africa, and North America, horns from various animals were made into cupping devices, among the Kelantanese Malays were buffalo horn. As time moved on the horns then devolved into bamboo cups, bamboo cupping still is practised today in some regions of china. The bamboo cups were immerged in boiling water to absorb the liquid heat, the heated bamboo cups were then positioned to specific points on the body, resulting with the hot and cold imbalances which created a vacuum inducing suction to the skin, the healers would leave the bamboo cups stationary for about 10 minutes, the cups would be reheated again and the procedure continues. Throughout history eventually cupping vessels changed and have been replaced by glass, plastic and rubber with exceptions of the bamboo cup still used today.
The two main methods of cupping practised wildly throughout history and also documented in the Ebers Papyrus, and Hippocrates were, Bleeding or wet cupping and Dry cupping. Dry cupping, this procedure involves creating a vacuum into the cup bringing blood and lymph to a pacific area, promoting circulation and healing, In addition it will help break adhesions between the skin and underlying connective tissues, allowing for freer movement, pulling the local underlying tissue up into the cupping vessel. Moist or wet is the oldest and the most effective method. Were a surgical tool called a lancet is used to scrape the skin, the glass is then placed over the manipulated area, and with the suction pulling the blood, which is then drawn up into the glass cup. As history moved on and we moved on in centuries, more cupping therapy methods devolved and have become more into worldwide use. Fire Cupping, Another traditional Chinese method of cupping used worldwide. A small cotton ball is lightly coated with alcohol. The cotton ball is then ignited and inserted inside the cup which will evacuate the air, creating the vacuum. The cotton ball is then withdrawn from the cup; the cup is then quickly placed onto the skin to the chosen area. Massage or moving cupping is done by applying oil to the skin, by moving the cup or glass around with a weak suction over the area that needs to be worked on. Needle cupping, this method is a combination of acupuncture and cupping. The acupuncture needle is applied first, and then the glass is applied over it. The hot cupping technique is done with moxa, also known as dried mugwort. This herb is a warming herb. To do this treatment the needles are warmed with smoldering dried mugwort, and then applied to the appropriate area. The cups are then applied over the top. The flash technique is a method where several medium cupping are done several times in quick succession. This stimulates the tissues in the area to speed up the healing process. Herbal cupping is done by applying the appropriate herbal tincture to the inside of the glass, and then the glass is applied to the skin. The water technique this would be the least used method of cupping. It is a very difficult method to learn. One third of the glass is filled with warm water and held very close to where it’s to be placed onto the body. Burning cotton wool is quickly inserted inside the glass, while the glass is swiftly turned over and placed in position. If done correctly, no water should be spilled.
Stationary cupping. The cups are placed onto the desired location and left on the same spot for ten to fifteen minutes. Several cups may be applied in a single treatment. To release the cups, press the skin around the cup this will breaks the seal ready for removal. Momentary cupping - The cups are 'popped' on and off rapidly Magnetic / Hand Pump This have become the most modern way of cupping for many practitioners, the use of a hand pump to obtain suction. This can give several advantages to the practitioner, no need for a flame or flammable liquids. It is also easier to judge the amount of suction needed, the magnetic are placed inside the cups the cups are then placed on allocated points, and suction is then applied. At the beginning cupping method was mainly used for miner elements but as time has moved on, we have found that cupping has many more benefits and healing powers, Common cold and cough Headaches including migraine Breathing difficulties (asthma) Diarrhea and constipation Tonsillitis and sore throat Angina pectoris (heart pain) Hand, leg, neck and back pain Osteoarthritis and gout
menstrual pain (endometriosis) Infertility Urinary incontinence Hypertension (high blood pressure) Hypotension (low blood pressure) Stomach aches and heart burn Neuralgia (nerve pain) Diabetes
The benefits of cupping therapies are endless Due to its stimulating and the strengthening effects. Although cupping is brilliant treatments in it there are some diseases that cupping therapy can not treat, Congenital (present at birth) and genetic diseases like down syndrome, cerebral palsy, cleft lip, hole-in-heart, congenital dislocation of the hip, Trauma and accidents, broken bones and joints, open wound, torn muscles, tissue and organ damage, internal bleeding, and excessive bleeding. However Cupping Therapy can promote quicker recovery and better healing of these conditions due to improvement of the blood circulation. Although cupping therapy can treat everybody, there are some exceptions, Children below 10 years old, adults above 70 years old with heart problems, pregnant
women, patients recovering from surgery, weak and thin people suffering from lack of blood. And people with threatening conditions, heart attack, asthmatic attack, trauma and accidents. In the mid-1800, s there was a decline in cupping therapy, it was sharply criticized by the medical community making cupping therapy fall away as a popular method. There are a number of issues related to why this was happening, during this period [mid – 1800] there was a newly established scientific model of medicine, discrediting all other previously established Traditional therapies in order to gain medical dominance. It was said that treating the inside was preference to the outside. More and more research was being put into the science of illnesses and diseases and more medics were becoming more available to help combat these diseases and were becoming widely used in hospitals and clinics achieving what were thought to be impossible. However over the 19th, 20th and 21st century the tides have turned and people are rediscovering and some practices have welcomed the acknowledgment, as well as reinstating alternative therapies. Although the use of Cupping has remained popular throughout many cultures who kept to their traditional ways, the 20th century witnessed a widespread decrease in many Anglo-Saxon societies. Even the North American Indians who used Buffalo Horn, seashells, gourds and bones for Cupping, but their culture have been decimated and the people herded into reservations, their traditions of health maintenance and healing were also lost. The most common and misunderstanding regarding one of the most powerful and beneficial after effects of cupping is the marks that are left on the skin. Cupping can leave marks which indicate that the stagnation or disease has been moved from the deeper tissue layers to the surface, allowing fresh oxygenated blood to nourish and heal the underlying areas. Any suction device left long enough in one place will loosen and pull this agent out and up to the skin surface. In many countries this is a non-issue, they've experienced themselves the amazing detoxifying effects that suction therapy can provide. But in some industrialized countries, where Allopathic Medicine has over shadowed more holistic, natural approaches, these surface discolorations are misinterpreted as damage rather the result of debilitating agents being drawn to the surface. People don’t look upon these marks as a healing process or the importance of the after effect they just see circular markings, but once people understand what these marks are, the colour the patterns of the marks depending on the level of stagnation in that area, the range of colour from the marks can vary from bright red to dark purple, usually lasting up to 3 days to one week sometimes longer if the person is very sick or sedentary. If there is no stagnation present, there will be only a light pink mark which disappears in a few minutes to a couple of hours. Where there is old trauma or injury may require multiple cupping treatments to remove all stagnation. You will find in follow up
treatments the marks will be visibly lighter and lighter as the pathogens are systemically removed from the body. Now in the twenty first century alternative therapies are becoming more popular, cupping therapy is now receiving additional credit and the world of medince are recognizing that alternative therapies do have great beneficial to our health. More people are turning back to the beginning to find alternative healing. People are now looking for more choices, other than drugs, their wonting something none invasive, calming, and relaxing. Cupping has developed into a very popular technique. By what we see and read through the media, papers and magazines, especially in America, Victoria Beckham was photographed with cupping marks on her back; Victoria had purple patches running down her spine as she arrived at Heathrow Airport. Denise Richards was also photographed with cupping marks, the 39-year-old model and actress showed of her treatment on her back as she was pictured in Malibu. Gwyneth Paltrow appeared at a film premiere with her cupping marks on her back. Olympic swimmer Wang Qun hoping her marks would lead her to a place on the medal podium. Stephanie Rice the Australian swimmer who won gold medals in the Olympic showed her marks of cupping therapy. Sharon Baird
Hijama Treatment of an Acute Ankle Injury
Hijama Treatment of an Acute Ankle Injury - a case study By Dr Rizwhan Suleman (Mchiro). The following is a hijama case study kindly contributed by Dr Rizwhan Suleman from Cardiff, Wales (see previous post dated 3 May, 2009: A comparison of Hijama (Cupping Therapy) with Chiropractic).
Hijama Clinic Case Study 1: Treatment of an Acute Ankle Injury By Dr Rizwhan Suleman (Mchiro) Case History A 24 year old Caucasian male country yard worker presents with an acute left ankle sprain injury. Onset was 5 days prior during an epileptic seizure. The exact mode of injury was unknown; the patient noted diffuse ankle swelling gradually over a period of half an hour, with no noticeable bruising or discolouration. Since the injury the patient has been wearing an ankle support and has been using ice but has not reduced his daily activities which involve 2-3 hours of walking. The patient noticed the
swelling was progressing distally to the toes and proximally up the shin. He also described an insect bite between the toes, which occurred after the injury, as being infected. Previous Medical History The patient suffered encephalitis at the age of 17 and made a full physical recovery following a 2 month state of comatose. Subsequently the patient suffers with unprovoked seizures that have been gradually decreasing in frequency over the years, from 8 per day to the current, 2 per week. Previous Treatment The patient saw his GP who prescribed non-steroidal anti inflammatory medication for the injury and anti-histamine and antibiotics for the infected insect bite. X-rays were taken and reported no abnormalities. Medication Antiepileptic medication, NSAIDs, anti-histamine and antibiotics. Physical examination Blood Pressure, heart rate, respiratory rate and temperature were all within normal range. The patient was 5ft 10, slim built and walked with an antalgic gait. There was diffuse swelling of the left foot, ankle and distal shin when compared to the right. There was a pea sized septic skin lesion between the dorsal surface of the 1st and 2nd distal metatarsal heads (see figure 2). There were no obvious structural deformities. Range of motion was markedly reduced in the ankle joint and produced pain on both active and passive motion. There were heightened pain levels on inversion of the foot. Muscle testing gave sufficient resistance in all planes. Vibration testing was negative on all bony structures. Soft tissue palpation elicited focal tenderness over the lateral ankle ligaments.
Diagnosis Acute grade 2 lateral ankle sprain Treatment
In assessing the risk of a treatment initiated seizure, the patient was laid supine on the floor and a dry vacuum cup was applied to the hand. In the absence of any prodromal symptoms, a further cup was applied to the asymptomatic foot. With the patient reporting no adverse symptoms, wet cupping (hijama) treatment was initiated on the symptomatic foot. Due to the degree of swelling several medium to small size cups were applied to the foot and ankle in consecutive sets of 2-3. Positioning of the cups was aimed at reducing swelling in the toes, ankle and shin but was also influenced by the irregular surfaces of the foot and ankle making cup application difficult (see figure 1a & 1b). A single cup was applied to the site of the infected bite which aspirated a quantity of green/yellow fluid. General RICE treatment advice was given and the ankle dressed.
Post Treatment follow-up Immediately after treatment there was a noticeable reduction in swelling (see figure 3). The patient reported feeling less pain and had a slight increase in ROM. On 24 hr follow-up there was a marked reduction in swelling, pain and ROM (see figure 4). On 1 week follow up the reduction in swelling was maintained and the patient was able to walk on the ankle with only a small amount of pain.
Note Wet cupping (Hijama) in this case was an effective treatment in aiding the recovery of an acutely sprained ankle. While reviewing the different treatment options for this type of injury, it becomes apparent that there are few options that can claim to give such an accelerated progress in its management. In the context of sporting injuries where recovery time is of upmost importance this treatment may become a preferred option. Further case studies of a similar nature will help gain more insight into the benefits of wet cupping (Hijama) in such contexts.
FEATURED HIJAMA THERAPIST: Dr Rizwhan Suleman LOCATION Cardiff Wales
Cupping Therapy is effective for headaches Dr Tamer Shaban Are you feeling stressed out by life's pressures? Perhaps you recently suffered from a headache or migraine. If so, you are certainly not alone! But don't suffer in silence - here is one of the best natural therapies you can try to treat your headache. Recent studies confirmed the effectiveness of cupping therapy in headache treatment. Headache is defined as a pain in the area of the head or neck region. And this pain has varies in intensity, duration and the area affected. There are mainly two types of headaches: primary and secondary. A primary headache is the most common type of headache and the most common example of this type is migraine. Migraine is a pain in half of the head and is characterized by a throbbing pain associated with nausea, vomiting and visual disturbance. The secondary headache is caused by a problem or a disease in the head and neck. The most common causes are haemorrhage, thrombosis, inflammation, fever and raised pressure in the head and neck region. Headaches are the most common problem of the nervous system. According to the World Health Organization, it affects two thirds of men and 80% of women in developed countries. Migraine is the nineteenth most common cause of disability worldwide, and it reduces the social life of people who suffer from it by about 60% and may become a lifelong disability(1). The prevalence and incidence of headaches in the United States of America is very high. About 90% of men and 95% of women have at least one attack of headache every year. Americans spend about two billion dollars every year on headache medications (2). The best natural solution for this condition is cupping therapy, defined as a healing by using cups. The most common types of cupping therapy are dry cupping, wet cupping and massage cupping.
Research has proved that cupping therapy is an effective treatment for headaches. The first research study was published in 2008 in The American Journal of Chinese Medicine. The aim of this research was to evaluate the effectiveness of wet cupping therapy in the treatment of tension headaches and migraines. Wet cupping is one of the oldest recorded medical modalities in the world and it was called (Al Hijama) in Arabic. The researchers treated seventy patients who were suffering from tension headaches. The patients were evaluated before and after treatment, and 66% recorded a decrease in the severity of their headaches. The researchers stated that there were clinical relevant benefits for these patients (3). The second research study was carried in 2010 in World Family Medicine Journal. The aim of this research was to evaluate the role of cupping therapy in the treatment of chronic headache and chronic back pain. There were eighty-six participants in this trial, but only thirty-seven of them were treated because they were suffering from chronic headache. The patients were evaluated pre- and post-therapy according to the visual pain scale. The results were excellent as the pain severity decreased significantly after one session of cupping therapy. This study revealed the positive effect of cupping therapy, especially that cupping is a good and effective treatment for chronic headaches (4). References: 1-World Health Organization- Headache disorders- Fact sheet-March 2004 2-Jim Meeks, PA-C -AFPPA 2003: Headache Management -- Evaluation and Treatment: Headache Prevalence -http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle... 3-Ahmadi A, Schwebel DC, Rezaei M., The efficacy of wet-cupping in the treatment of tension and migraine headache. Am J Chin Med. 2008;36(1):37-44. 4-Mohamed M. Reslan Hssanien, Mansoura Fawaz S., Abbas F. Ahmed, Samar Al Emadi, Mohammed Hammoudeh , Effect of cupping therapy in treating chronic headache and chronic back pain at Al heijamah clinic HMC, World Family Medicine Journal, April 2010 Volume 8, Issue 3
About the author Dr Tamer Shaban Vice Chairman of International Cupping Society (UK), M.B.B.CH, D.H.P., D.C.M.T, S.N.H.S Dip. (Nutrition), S.N.H.S Dip. (Herbalism), Member of the Royle Institute of Hypnotherapy and Psychotherapy, Member of the Complete Mind therapists Association. cupping and natural health Articles
The Movements of Qi According to Chinese Medicine By Philippe Sionneau The origin of the idea of the movements of Qi Qi possesses many different characteristics, the most fundamental of which is movement. According to the ancients, Qi is constantly active and moving. Furthermore, we know that Qi has two specific tendencies that the Chinese call Yin and Yang. The first is a heavy, solid, dense and calm Qi; this is Yin Qi. The other is a light, delicate, less dense, dynamic Qi; this is Yang Qi. It is the interaction and confrontation between these two opposing principles that causes movement, exchange, communication, and transformation. Different types of complimentary movements are born from this contradiction between Yin and Yang: condensation/dispersion, attraction/repulsion, inspiration/expiration, entry/exit, contraction/expansion, upbearing/downbearing, inward movement/outward movement, etc. In Chinese medicine, two of these fundamental couples make up the basic physiology of the body: upbearing/downbearing and inward/outward movement. Since the beginning of Chinese medicine, the Huang Di Nei Jing Su Wen (Ch. 68) has stressed the importance of these four dynamics, without which life would cease to exist. "Without inward and outward movement there can be no birth, growth, maturity, or aging; without upbearing and downbearing, there can be no birth, growth, transformation, withdrawal, and dormancy." "Nothing exists without upbearing, downbearing, inward and outward movement" (Huang Di Nei Jing Su Wen, Chapter 68). Here we are going to develop upon the idea of the Qi "dynamic" (Qi Ji) in terms of how it is used to describe the different movements of Qi and their roles at the physiological level.
The movements of Qi and their directions The four fundamental movements of Qi are upbearing, downbearing, inward and outward movement.
Upbearing (Sheng - 升) is a vertical movement from bottom to top, like the movement of wood. Downbearing (Jiang - 降) is a vertical movement from top to bottom, like the movement of metal. Inward movement (Ru - 入) is a "centripetal (1)" movement from the exterior of the body toward the interior of the body, like the movement of water. Outward movement (Chu - 出) is a "centrifugal (2)" movement from the interior of the body toward to exterior of the body, like the movement of fire.
As Zhang Jie Bin emphasizes in the Jing Yue Quan Shu (The Complete Works of Jing Yue), upbearing is due to Yang Qi, while downbearing is due to Yin Qi: "Yang governs movement, Yin governs rest, Yang governs upbearing, Yin governs downbearing (4)." In the same vein, inward movemen is associated with Yin Qi and outward movement is associated with Yang Qi.
The movements of Qi in physiology The channels and Zang Fu (and their correspondences) govern the body's main physiological functions. These functions depend on the four basic movements described above. Neither the channels nor the Zang Fu can avoid these movements. Physiology is movement and life is movement. The functions of the channels and Zang Fu are based on these movements. In order to illustrate our subject, we will give four typical examples where the Qi dynamic is fundamental. The lung and the liver The lung's function is to take in the clear Qi (Qing Qi), to expel turbid Qi (Zhuo Qi), to diffuse Qi and fluids, and to depuratively downbear Qi and fluids. More specifically, with inward movement it absorbs clear Qi (heavenly Qi) through inspiration, and with the outward movement it expels the air particles that are not used by the body through expiration. It diffuses Qi, blood, and fluids toward the periphery of the body with the upbearing and outward movements (ascending and centrifugal movement). It sends fluids toward the lower body thanks to the downbearing movement. It sends Qi to the kidneys through inward movement (inspiration of air) and downbearing (the descending of the Qi of the air), therefore generating a centripetal and descending movement. Thus, we can see that the lung is motivated in it's major functions by the four basic dynamics, which frequently combine with one another. Outward movement is combined with upbearing while inward movement is combined with downbearing. When studying the nature of the movements in the physiology of the Zang Fu, the lung/liver couple is often mentioned. It is said that liver Qi upbears on the left and lung Qi downbears on the right. These two movements respectively help spleen Qi to upbear and stomach Qi to downbear (5). The liver in the lower burner promotes upbearing, while the lung in the upper burner promotes downbearing. Ye Tian Shi highlights the roles of the wood and metal organs (6): "The Qi dynamic of the human body is naturally connected to heaven and earth. The liver upbears on the left, the lung downbears on the right, [if] upbearing and downbearing are as they should be, then the Qi dynamic can unfold. Transportation, dispersion, and circulation of Jing Qi
in the human body operate thanks to the pivoting of the liver and lung. The upbearing movment of the liver sends it upwards to the head and the upper orifices, the downbearing movement of the lung sends it downward to the Zang Fu, tendons and bones, this ensures that Qi circulates freely and that the Zang Fu are calm and harmonious." So the liver and lung do not have a subordinate role in terms of promoting the upbearing and downbearing movements. Rather, they have a primary role for the same reasons as the spleen and stomach do, even if the spleen and stomach are the initiators of these movements due to their central position. The heart and the kidneys Another typical example of the Qi dynamic is the union between fire and water. To balance Yin and Yang in the body, kidney water should unite with heart fire. Kidney water is the Yin of the kidneys. It needs to upbear to join heart Yin in order to help it control heart Yang. Heart fire is the Yang of the heart. It needs to downbear to join kidney Yang in order to help it control kidney Yin (7). The upbearing of kidney Yin and the downbearing of heart Yang represent the upbearing and downbearing movements of Yin and Yang in the body. They harmonize the top and the bottom, the north and the south, water and fire, and Yin and Yang, therefore promoting overall balance. "The heart is fundamentally the fire organ, but within fire there is water. The kidneys are fundamentally the water organs, but within water there is fire. Fire is the governor of water, this is why heart Qi wants to downbear to unite [with water]. Water is the source of fire, this is why kidney Qi wants to upbear to support [fire]. Water that does not rise becomes pathogenic. [By] regulating kidney Yang, Yang Qi is restored, water Qi follows [the upward movement of Yang] and therefore upbears. Fire that does not downbear becomes pathogenic. [By] nourishing heart Yin, Yin Qi is restored, fire Qi follows [the downward movement of Yin] and therefore downbears" (Wu Yi Hui Jie - Master Wu's Annotated Compilation of Medicine), Tang Da Lie (1662-1722), Qing Dynasty. When water receives fire, it upbears, when fire receives water, it downbears. This is why we not only talk about the union between fire and water, but of their mutual support as well. It is from this mutual support that balance originates. As Zhang Jie Bin asserts, if the union between water and fire is broken, life is put in danger: "The fundamental nature of fire is heat. Supposing that fire exists without water, fire would necessarily be extreme, then Yin is destroyed and the ten thousand things are burned and dessicated. The fundamental nature of water is cold. Supposing that water exists without fire, cold would necessarily be extreme, then Yang is destroyed and the ten thousand things become immobile and die." The spleen and stomach To refine our understanding of the movements, we must realize that they do not manifest individually or separately from each other within each organ. Taking the example of the spleen and stomach allows us to understand that the movements are one of the tools that coordinate the body into one entity. The function of the spleen and stomach in digestion is to assimilate the Jing from food and drink and to get rid of the waste that results from this transformation. What can be assimilated is called the clear (Qing), while the waste is called the turbid (Zhuo). The spleen upbears the clear toward the lung and heart to be absorbed. The stomach downbears the turbid toward the large intestine to be eliminated. Two facts need to be highlighted here: 1- The upbearing of the spleen is aided by the upbearing of the liver and the downbearing of
the stomach is aided by the downbearing of the gallbladder. This shows that the movements of the Zang Fu are influenced by, or integrated with other organs, and that they are never separated from one another. 2- The upbearing of the spleen and the downbearing of the stomach mutually influence one another. If the clear can sufficiently upbear, the turbid can downbear easily; if the turbid downbear properly, the clear will upbear more easily. If the turbid, which has an obstructive and sticky nature, downbears poorly and stagnates in the middle burner, the upbearing of the clear runs the risk of being obstructed, heavy, and slow. If the clear, which has the job of tonifying the Zang Fu and therefore allowing them to perform their duties properly, does not upbear correctly, the downbearing function of the stomach, gallbladder, lung and large intestine is impaired and they cannot eliminate the turbid. The movements are interdependent and mutually influence each other. "The Spleen is the Yin earth from which Yang upbears, the stomach is the Yang earth from which Yin downbears, earth is situated in the center, thus fire [of the earth] upbears, and water [of the earth] downbears. On the left there is wood, on the right there is metal, the left governs upbearing, the right governs downbearing, the five movements [Wu Xing] upbear and downbear… Upbearing depends on the movement of spleen Qi which turns to the left, downbearing depends on stomach Qi which turns (8) to the right. This is why when the Qi of the middle is abundant, spleen Qi upbears and stomach Qi downbears, and the four manifestations (9) turn (10), [if] the Qi of the middle burner stagnates, then the spleen becomes depressed and the stomach counterflows, and the four manifestations lack movement" (Yi Xue Qiu Shi - Real Research on Medicine), Wu Da, 1879, Qing dynasty.
Summary of the predominant movements of the Zang Fu: Please note that this does not intend to say that an organ can only have one movement as a part of its physiology, the lung has four movements but it is it's downbearing property that is the most prominent.
Liver Qi upbears. Gallbladder Qi downbears. Heart Qi downbears. Small Intestine Qi downbears. Spleen Qi upbears. Stomach Qi moves inward and downbears. Lung Qi upbears and moves outward, moves inward and downbears (11). Large Intestine Qi downbears and moves outward. Kidney Yang Qi downbears, while Kidney Yin Qi upbears (12). Bladder Qi moves outward.
Only the Zang Fu that have a relationship with the exterior can have inward and outward movements. This is the case with the lung, stomach, bladder and large intestine. The others only operate from the internal movements of upbearing and downbearing, but they can be influenced by the inward and outward movements of the exteriorly-related organs. It is interesting to note that at the level of the five Zang organs, those which are at the top, the heart and the lung, have Qi that downbears, those which are below, the liver and the kidneys, have Qi that upbears, and the spleen and stomach, which are in the center, have Qi that upbears and downbears respectively. The top and the bottom communicate with the center as their pivot.
The Movements of Qi in Pathology Life depends on the four basic movements. Their disappearance signals the loss of communication between Yin and Yang, which precedes death. "Exit and entry are lost when the Shen's transformation mechanism dies out, upbearing and downbearing cease then the isolated (13) Qi dies" (Huang Di Nei Jing Su Wen, Ch. 68). If these four movements do not function properly, disease develops. So these four physiological tendencies correspond to pathological tendencies when the movements do not manifest correctly. For instance, if the movements are disturbed, liver Qi tends toward stagnation (Qi Zhi: Qi stagnation), lung Qi counterflows (Qi Ni: counterflow Qi), spleen Qi sinks (Qi Xian: sinking Qi), etc. If the outward movement of Qi is replete, this is called Qi desertion (Qi Tuo). If the upbearing or downbearing, or inward or outward movements are blocked, Qi accumulates (Qi Jie: Qi bind, or Qi Yu: Qi depression)… Furthermore, as Zhou Xue Hai points out (1856-1906) in the Du Yi Sui Bi (14) (Notes on the Study of Medicine), the inward/outward movements are related more with external problems, while upbearing/downbearing are related more with internal problems: "For illnesses from internal damage (Nei Shang), many illnesses are [caused by an imbalance] of upbearing and downbearing, upbearing and downbearing govern the interior. For illnesses from external damage (Wai Gan), many illnesses are [caused by an imbalance] of the inward and outward movements, the inward and outward movements govern the exterior." When Qi flows properly and in the right direction, we say that the Qi dynamic is smooth and harmonious (Qi Ji Tiao Chang). On the other hand, we also talk about the loss of harmony regarding the Qi dynamic (Qi Ji Shi Tiao), or of the lack of flow of the Qi dynamic (Qi Ji Bu Chang). When Qi flows harmoniously and in the right direction, all of the Zang Fu and channels play a role. However, three organs have a more important role than the others. The spleen produces Qi. When there is spleen Qi vacuity (i.e. a vacuity of it's functions) any organ can become imbalanced and lose its harmony. The lung diffuses Qi throughout the entire body. It gives the impetus for Qi to circulate throughout the body. If there is lung Qi vacuity, Qi circulation can be hindered anywhere. For it's part, the liver allows for the smooth flow of Qi. It relaxes tensions that are posing as obstacles for the movements of Qi, promotes the flow of Qi in the channels, and furthers the circulation of Qi that was initiated by the lung. When these three organs perform their respective tasks well, the Qi dynamic is harmonious and smooth.
1. The term centripetal is perhaps a bit too strong because although it can certainly describe inward movement, the inward movement may simply be a movement of Qi penetrating from the exterior to the interior, without necessarily reaching the center of the body. 2. The term centrifugal is also perhaps a bit too strong here because although it can describe outward movement, outward movement can simply be a movement of Qi from the interior toward the exterior, without necessarily being concentric. 3. Zhang Jie Bin, alias Zhang Jing Yue (1563-1640) is a major figure in Chinese medicine. He is one of the most celebrated commentators on the Nei Jing, and has clarified many difficult subjects. The most celebrated of his personal theories is that Yang can never be in excess. Instead, since it is the basis of life, it is relatively vacuous, hence the need to tonify it. Some wanted to put this theory in opposition to that of Zhu Dan Xi (1281-1358) who said that Yang is very often replete and therefore we should nourish Yin. Ultimately, I think that the two concepts do not actually contradict one another. In fact, Zhu Dan Xi was inspired by the thought of Liu Wan Su (1120-1200) who said that Yang becomes replete due to the principle of "similar transformations." The body is a series of heat transformations that sooner or later cause the development of pathological heat. Heat is nothing more than a repletion of Yang that has the tendency to deplete Yin. Zhu Dan Xi echoes this idea by explaining that the body has a tendency to induce six stagnations that often result in the production of heat. Finally, he asserts that when Ministerial fire is agitated, it injures Yin. When Zhang Jie Bin talks about Yang, he is talking about physiological Yang, of true Yang that is in fact the origin of life. This Yang has the tendency to be consumed by the natural functioning of the body, and should therefore be restored. Zhu Dan Xi refers to a pathological repletion of Yang, while Zhang Jie Bin refers to a physiological vacuity of Yang. So, the two concepts are not incompatible. Instead, modern man is beset by these phenomena simultaneously. In the end, the two masters agreed by underlining the need to nourish Yin since "true Yin is insufficient". 4. In the Lei Jing (Book of Classifications) Zhang Jie Bin also says "Yang upbears on the left, Yin downbears on the right." 5. In return, the spleen and the stomach assist the movements of the liver and lung. 6. Ye Tian Shi (1667-1746), alias Ye Gui or Ye Xiang Yan, was one of the most remarkable physicians of the Qing dynasty. Born into a family of physicians, he studied the medical classics very early on, and rapidly surpassed his professors by the age of 20. He quickly became a local celebrity. He continued his research by studying with numerous masters. With his talents, he became one of the founders of the Warm Disease School of the Qing dynasty. He developed the theory of the four levels (Wei, Qi, Ying, Blood) for the differential diagnosis and treatment of warm diseases. He is the author of the famous Wen Re Lun (Treatise on Warm Heat), and Lin Zheng Zhi Nan Yi An (A Clinical Guide to Patterns with Case Histories). His disciples published these two works after his death. However, Ye Tian Shi should not only be viewed as one of the major developers of Warm Disease theory. He was a great practitioner and a genius innovator, creating numerous modifications from Shang Han Lun formulas to suit the conditions of his patients, and inventing many harmonizing formulas for wood-earth disharmonies, using
combinations of cold and hot remedies, etc. He also inspired the theories of Pi Wei Lun in using warm medicinals to allow fire to engender earth. 7. It is said that the fire of the heart and kidneys warms kidney water so that it does not freeze. 8. The phrases "turn to the right" and "turn to the left" mean that these movements are relying on wood to upbear Qi on the left and for metal to downbear Qi on the right. 9. This is the Xiang character that is translated as "manifestation" and refers to the Zang Fu organs. 10. This means that the upbearing/downbearing movements of the four other Zang turn around a central pivot. 11. It is said that the fundamental movement of the lung is to downbear, but this is an exaggeration. One must remember that one of it's major functions, distributing Qi, blood and fluids throughout the entire body, is done due to it's diffusive movement, which is an upbearing and centrifugal dynamic. 12. Kidney Qi receives Qi (Na Qi), which involves downbearing. Kidney Yin upbears to nourish the heart. 13. Here, upbearing and downbearing refer to the upbearing of the Yang of the earth/Yin and the downbearing of the Yin of heaven/Yang. The relationship between heaven and earth lies at the origin of all creation. During creation on earth, Qi is twofold: a Yin Qi and a Yang Qi that are simultaneously communicating and opposing each other, therefore engendering the ten thousand things. If the upbearing and downbearing disappear, heaven and earth disappear, the two opposing Qi's slip away and Qi returns to it's undifferentiated and unmanifested state. It once again becomes Wu Ji's "One." In a way, manifested Qi, which becomes "One" instead of "Two" dies. 14. Work published in the Qing dynasty in 1891, written by Zhou Xue Hai (18561906). Zhou Xue Hai is probably the most prolific author of the late Qing dynasty. He had a particular gift for synthesizing the teachings of previous masters. He did this most notably with the teachings of Zhang Yuan Su and Liu Wan Su, two celebrities of "Jin/Yuan medicine," but also with those of Ye Tian Shi and Zhang Lu, who were responsible for two major works in the Qing Dynasty. He had a reputation for being an unmatched physician, especially when it came to treating recalcitrant and complex illnesses. Phillippe Sionneau is a French practitioner. He was born in 1967, in France. He received his B.A in Economics in 1983 and on 1986 he received a diploma in naturopathy from the R. Masson Institute. In 1994 Sionneau finished his studies at Hubei College of Chinese Medicine, in Wuhan in China and received his B.Sc degree. This year also marked the beginning of his clinical work in various clinics in Paris, Geneva and Barcelona. Over time, Sionneau became a well known practitioner in Europe, teaching across Europe- mainly France, Spain , Switzerland and also USA, Canada, Italia… Over the years, Sionneau wrote about 20 books, some of them on his own and some along with Bob Flaws and Lu Gang.
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