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Causes of Arthritis and Acupuncture Treatment

Arthritis is the inflammatory changes of the joints, associated with various pathogenic factors. We can categorize it into rheumatic arthritis, rheumatiod arthritis, osteoarthritis, etc. Its clinical symptoms include pain, numbness and difficulty in movement of the affected joints. From the point of view of Chinese medicine, arthritis can be divided into the following types:

  1. Wandering arthralgia-syndrome: Wandering arthralgia, accompanied with aversion to wind, fever, thin, white or greasy tongue coating. Floating pulse.
  2. Painful arthralgia-syndrome: severe stabbing arthralgia with fixed localization, alleviated by warmth and aggravated by cold, white tongue coating, tight pulse.
  3. Fixed arthralgia-syndrome: soreness and fixed pain in the joints, or with swelling and numbness, aggravated on cloudy and rainy days, white and greasy tongue coating, soft and slow pulse.
  4. Heat arthralgia-syndrome: arthralgia with local redness, swelling and burning, excruciating pain, involving one or several joints, accompanied with fever, sweating and thirst, yellow and greasy tongue coating, slippery and rapid pulse.


According to the theory of Chinese medicine, the following causes contribute to arthritis.

Weak joints and Qi deficiency

Weak joints can be passed by heredity or resulted from Qi deficiency. When Qi deficiency happens, you will feel cold. If it last for a long time, the muscles and tendons will be affected first, and then the joints will be weakened. General speaking, Qi in your body is more deficient in winter than other seasons. If you live or work in a damp area, or expose your joints to the cold, damp environment, you will have more chances to suffer from arthritis.

Weakness of the internal organs

From Chinese medicine, we all know that there are five Yin organs that are considered the most important to our health and longevity. They are heart, liver, lungs, kidneys and spleen. These organs in Chinese medicine are similar, but different from ones in western medicine. If one of these five organs functions improperly, sickness can occur. Also, all of them are mutually interrelated. For instance, rheumatic arthritis is caused by the weakness of the liver and kidneys.


The consequence of injury is block the smooth Qi circulation in joints. If it persists continuously, the Qi imbalance can result in arthritis.


It is well known that aging contributes many diseases such as arthritis. When you are getting older, the lower the Qi level in your body. If Qi level drops to below the required level, the system of your body starts to degenerate. Practicing Qigong and Taiji is to slow down the aging process by building up the Qi in your body.


Because arthritis is very common disease both in China and the United States, we have treated many patients who suffered from arthritis using acupuncture combined with Chinese herb medicine.

Clinical materials

Among 56 cases that we recorded, 26 were males, 30 females, with the age from 40 to 70 years old. The duration of disease is from 5 months to 6 years.

Main acupoints: Quchi, Hegu, Waiguan, Wangu, Fengshi, Kunlun, Yanglingquan and Jianyu.

Supplementary acupoints: Shenshu, Guanyuan, Zusanli, Yinlingquan and Geshu.


Out of the 56 cases, 35 patients were cured or significantly improved, 17 patients were improved. The rate of effectiveness is 92.8%.


Each patient has his or her own physical and mental characteristics and developed his or her own habits and lifestyle, which means that we can not apply the same approach to treat different patients, even through they probably have the same symptom. In order to achieve higher rate of treatment effectiveness, we have designed unique treatment plan for each individual patient.


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