Diarrhea refers to frequent defecation and loose or watery stool. Improper diet and exo-pathogenic factors may cause gastrointestinal dysfunction that results in diarrhea. The disease is most prevalent in summer and autumn when dampness and heat, the two most common exo-pathogenic factors, are rampant. Deficiency of the spleen or kidney Yang may also cause chronic diarrhea.
Symptoms. Symptoms of diarrhea may (in accordance with its causes and characteristics) be classified into three types: diarrhea due to cold, diarrhea due to heat, and diarrhea at dawn. Patients with diarrhea due to cold generally suffer from intestinal gurgling and abdominal pain, loose stool with undigested food, watery stool, frequent clear urination without thirst, and a deep, slow pulse. This type of diarrhea is mostly caused by cold and spleen deficiency. Characteristics of diarrhea as the result of heat are stinking, yellow, loose stool; burning sensation around the anus; thirst, restlessness; dark urine; frequent urination;
yellowish tongue fur; a wiry, rapid pulse; and usually fever. Diarrhea at dawn is mostly due to weakness of kidney Yang, which results in indigestion of food. The patient will usually loosely defecate, every day at dawn at least 2-3 times.
1. Self-Treatment with Qigong Exercise. Practice Automatic Qi Circulation Exercise (counterclockwise direction only) supplemented with the Abdominal Exercise. Patients with diarrhea caused by cold and dampness may practice Filth Elimination Exercise, while patients with diarrhea before dawn may practice Taking Essence from the Sun.
2. Treatment with Outgoing Qi. Carry out digital point pressing on the acupuncture points Pishu (U.B. 20), Weishu (U.B. 21), and Dachangshu (U.B. 25) to open the back transporting points (Shu points). With the tip of the middle finger of the right hand, press the point Lanmen (ileocecal junction) while pressing the point Jiuwei (Ren 15) with the tip of the middle finger of the left hand to help normalize the functional activities of Qi.
Apply the Flat Palm gesture and vibrating manipulation to emit Qi toward the points Zhong-wan (Ren 12), Tianshu (St. 25), Duqi (S 35 the umbilicus), and Guanyuan (Ren 14) for a period of 14 normal respirations. Massage the abdomen 36 times. The massage will have a tonifyng effect if the case is due to a deficiency syndrome and a purging effect if the case is due to an excess syndrome.
Apply the Flat Palm gesture and pushing-pulling manipulation to emit Qi towards the abdomen. Guide the Qi to rotate in a clockwise or counterclockwise direction, then guide it to flow downward along the Stomach Channel. Next, push from the coccyx up to the seventh thoracic vertebra with a flat palm. Then press and knead the Urinary Bladder Channel (both sides) and the point Zmanli (St. 36). For patients with diarrhea at dawn, use the Flat Palm gesture and pushing-rotating manipulation to emit Qi towards Mingmen (Du 4, gate of life) and the Dantian for a period of 9—10 normal respiration cycles. For patients with diarrhea due to cold and dampness or due to heat and dampness, use the Flat Palm gesture and pulling-guiding manipulation to guide Qi to flow downward along the Stomach Channel. Continue to guide Qi out of the body through the points Zusanli (St. 36) and Jiexi (St. 41), or through the toes.
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