Acupuncture for Chronic Fatigue/Fibromyalgia - Treatment Protocols

General Approaches

Acupuncture For Chronic Fatigue/Fibromyalgia - Treatment Protocols

Acupuncture treatment protocols are generally directed towards the deeper root of a persons set of health issues, not at each individual issue. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, treatment is generally directed towards the individuals diagnostic pattern(s) and their primary issue is only a part of the information required to approach the correct patterns to treat (see "treating the cause vs. the symptoms" for an introduction to this process.).

In designing an acupuncture protocol for fibromyalgia (cfs), one might find one or a combination of the following patterns: kidney yang deficiency, kidney yin deficiency, spleen and stomach damp heat, spleen qi deficiency among many other possibilities and possible combinations.

Below you will find some of the more common tcm diagnoses and acupuncture treatment protocols for chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, and related disorders. There are many ways to approach the treatment of this condition within TCM. Our presentation describes foundational approaches that would need to be further tailored in most cases to be effective for a given individual.

  • Etiology & Pathology:
    • Differentiation:
    • Damp Heat Obstruction - Excess
      • Signs & Symptoms:
        • Heaviness of the body, tired muscles, fatigue, poor appetite, chest oppression, inability to concentrate, chronic dull headache, thirst, dark urine, hot stools.
        • Tongue: Greasy yellow coat
        • Pulse: Slippery, rapid
      • Treatment Points:
    • Qi Deficiency
      • Signs & Symptoms:
        • Fatigue that is worse in the morning, weak muscles, weak voice, shortness of breath, spontaneous sweating, poor appetite, loose stools.
        • Tongue: Pale
        • Pulse: Weak
      • Treatment Points:
    • Yin Deficiency
      • Signs & Symptoms:
        • This pattern may effect the LU, KD a/or ST.
        • Common Yin Deficiency signs: heat in the 5 palms, afternoon fevers, nightsweats, malar flush.
        • LU Yin: dry cough, dry throat, hoarseness
        • ST Yin: no appetite, epigastric pain, dry stools
        • KD Yin: fatigue, lack of will power
        • Tongue: LU: red, peeled; ST: midline crack, imbalanced coat in the ST/SP area; KD: red w/no coat
        • Pulse: Thin, rapid
      • Treatment Points:
    • Yang Deficiency
      • Signs & Symptoms:
        • Extreme fatigue, cold limbs a/or joints, weakness of the lower body, low libido, bright white skin, clear and copious urine.
        • Tongue: Pale, swollen, wet
        • Pulse: Deep, weak
      • 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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