The Treatment of Chest Pain with Chinese Medicine
Chief Complaint:В Chest Bi (pain) Syndrome
by Wei Liu, TCMD, MPH, Lic. Acupuncturist, Dip. Herbologist, Lic. Nutritionist
John was a 49 years old patient having been ill with hypertension and coronary heart disease for 5 years. He paid his first visit to our clinic on Oct. 26. His blood pressure is usually around 140/90mmhg and could be well controlled by medications. But he often experienced frequent palpitation, insomnia, anxiety and depression. The palpitation usually happens in the morning and he had a lot of dreams in his sleeping. Also he had a burning sensation in the stomach with acid reflux. Sweating, chest oppression, flush and dizziness were absent. Defecation was regular, and the appetite was okay.
Tongue: Pale with thick whitish coating
Pulse: Weak and wiry
Diagnosis: Chest Bi Syndrome (obstruction of phlegm dampness in the chest)
Treatment Principle: Dissolve phlegm, dissipate nodules and warm up the heart yang
Herbal Treatment: Gua Lou Xie Bai Gui Zhi Tang with modification
Gua Lou 30g
Xie Bai 10g
Gui Zhi 19g
Ban Xia 10g,
Fu Ling 15g
Zhi Shi 10g
Hou Po 10g
Dan Shen 15g
Huang Qi 25g
2 doses, to be decocted in water for oral use.
On his second visit on November 2, palpitation has stopped, the blood pressure was measured 125/80mmhg, and the burning sensation in the stomach also terminates. But the sleeping is still shallow although dreams are less. The tongue is pale red with whitish thin coating. Then the above treatment was continued.
Analysis: Chest Bi syndrome is usually marked by pain in the chest. But palpitation may also be an essential manifestation because any disorders of the heart may cause the palpitation. In this case. There are not many typical manifestations of dampness obstructing in the chest. But the tongue and coating, which was pale and thick and white, definitely shows there are both yang deficiency and accumulation of phlegm dampness. As for the anxiety and depression, it is mainly related to spleen yang deficiency and the ensuing stagnated flow of liver qi. So, the treatment is aimed at removing dampness and warming up and promoting flow of the heart yang. The formula adopted is a famous formula used to treat Chest Bi Syndrome in Chinese medicine. In this formula, Gua Lou, Zhi Shi, Ban Xia are used to dissolve the phlegm and dry dampness, Xie Bai and Gui Zhi are used to warm up and promote flow of the heart yang. Dan Shen and Huang Qi are used to activate flow of blood and assist heart qi, because the heart controls blood and heart qi is the motive force for blood flow. Hou Po and Chen Pi can both promote flow of qi and dry dampness. So as a whole this formula can dry dampness, remove phlegm and warm up and promote flow of the heart yang.
Wei Liu, TCMD, MPH, Lic. Acupuncturist, Lic. Nutritionist, Dipl. Herbologist
TCM Health Center
6550 York Ave. S. Suite 417
Edina, MN 55435
Tel: (952) 926-4011
Fax: (952) 826-0982