Understanding Fibromyalgia from eastern and western perspective.

(Organ names in Chinese medicine differ from Western medicine’s understanding).​

Fibromyalgia is a chronic pain disorder that affects an estimated 10 million people in the United States. In Western medicine, fibromyalgia is considered a neurological disorder that causes widespread pain and tenderness in the body, as well as fatigue, sleep disturbances, and cognitive difficulties. There is no known cure for fibromyalgia, but medications such as pain relievers, antidepressants, and anti-seizure drugs may help manage symptoms.

In Chinese medicine, fibromyalgia is believed to be caused by a deficiency of Qi and Blood, which results in the stagnation of energy and the accumulation of toxins in the body. According to Chinese medical theory, Qi is the vital energy that flows through the body, while Blood is the substance that nourishes and moistens the body’s tissues. When Qi and Blood are deficient, the body’s energy flow becomes blocked, leading to pain and discomfort.

TCM practitioners use a combination of acupuncture, herbal remedies, and dietary adjustments to manage fibromyalgia symptoms. Acupuncture involves the insertion of thin needles into specific points on the body to stimulate the flow of Qi and alleviate pain. Herbal remedies, are used to nourish Qi and Blood, as well as to remove toxins from the body, and/or move stasis in the qi and blood levels. TCM practitioners may also recommend dietary adjustments, such as avoiding cold and raw foods, to improve digestion and promote energy flow.

Western medicine and Chinese medicine can work together to manage fibromyalgia symptoms. Patients may find relief by combining Western medications with TCM therapies such as acupuncture and herbal remedies. However, it is important to consult with both a Western medical doctor and a licensed TCM practitioner before beginning any new treatment regimen.

In conclusion, while Western medicine approaches fibromyalgia as a neurological disorder, Chinese medicine views it as a manifestation of Qi and Blood deficiency. TCM therapies such as acupuncture, herbal remedies, and dietary adjustments can be effective in managing fibromyalgia symptoms. By working together, Western medicine and Chinese medicine can provide a complementary approach to managing fibromyalgia and improving overall health and well-being.


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