Tales from the Practice of Medicine: Chinese Medicine Relieves Chronic Nasal Congestion

Wang Jinze

PureInsight | November 14, 2008

[PureInsight.org] A man in his thirties told me that he had been experiencing nasal congestion ever since he had a severe cold four years ago. At the time, he took western medicine for several days, which basically cured the cold. He didn’t pay much attention to the lingering congestion at first, but over these four years it has become worse, and particularly so in cold weather. He tried all kinds of medical treatments, but without results. Every night, his nose was completely congested and he could only sleep with his mouth open.

Recently, he considered trying Chinese medicine and came to see me. By measuring his pulse rate and observing his tongue, I diagnosed that he indeed had a cold and nasal congestion. Looking through his medical history, I found he otherwise had very good health. The appropriate treatment was to use warming menses, thus dispersing the cold and disseminating and adjusting the cold qi. I prescribed a week’s worth of Chinese medicine, and suggested he consume Guizhi soup, Xinyi San, and Mahuang Fuzi Xixin soup.

When this patient returned to see me, he told me that he hadn’t expected Chinese medicine to have such an amazing effect. After taking the medicine for about seven days, his nose was unclogged and his symptoms improved a lot. He asked me what kind of method I used to treat his illness.

I told him that the theory was quite simple: Chinese medicine follows the laws of nature, and it says that having a cold is due to the invasion of “wind,” or cold qi. Nasal congestion and a runny nose are the body’s own mechanisms of self-defense and can stop that cold qi from invading. By contrast, western medicine thinks that nasal congestion is due to a swelling of the nose’s mucous membranes and a runny nose is due to over-secretion of mucous. A doctor of western medicine would use pseudo-ephedrine to contract the blood vessels in the nose and use diphenhydramine to reduce fluid in the sinuses. Indeed, these methods can relieve the symptoms of nasal congestion and a runny nose, but they also make way for cold qi to enter the nose. That cold qi could stay in the nose for a long time, and hence this particular patient’s condition and continuing symptoms of nasal congestion over the years.

To expel the “wind,” or cold qi, Chinese medicine uses methods to induce warming or sweating. Without cold qi, the conditions of nasal congestion and a runny nose naturally disappear.

As the saying goes, “If we want to catch bandits, we must first catch their king.” In other words, rather than prescribing treatments to address particular superficial symptoms, Chinese medicine looks at the root and natural causes of the illnesses according to the theories of Yin and Yang and the Five Elements. In this way, Chinese medicine is beyond modern medical science. The patient thought this explanation was quite reasonable.

Translated from: http://www.zhengjian.org/zj/articles/2008/9/23/54953.html


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