The Acupuncture Treatment of Inability to Swallow


Chief Complaint: Inability to swallow solid food

Medical History: Patient was a four year old girl who had been unable to swallow solid foods for almost two weeks. She had been taken to her M.D. who was unable to find any medical reason for the problem.

Her father brought her to my office and was unable to identify any emotional trauma which might have triggered the problem. Fortunately, she was able to swallow small amounts of liquids, so was not overly dehydrated.

She presented as a pleasant, shy little girl. There was no obvious tension between her and her father.

Questioning exam: On questioning the girl was able to describe how it felt when she tried to swallow anything solid. She said it felt like something was stuck in her throat and wouldnt let the food pass down. She described the blockage as being on either side of the throat, right above the medial ends of the clavicles.

Pulse exam: Due to her age, no pulse was taken, and no obvious pathology showed on her tongue or finger vein.

OM Diagnosis: My assessment was channel obstruction of the Leg Yang Ming Meridian. The rationale for this was the absence of any other obvious signs or symptoms as well as the location of the feeling of blockage.

Treatment Principle: Remove the channel obstruction.

Point Prescription: Because of her age, and my desire to have a mild, but ongoing effect, I used Korean hand magnets on points related to the Leg Yang Ming Meridian and the throat. The specific points and magnetic polarities were:

Left St 41 (bio-south pole)
Right Sp 5 (bio-north pole)
Left Pc 7 (bio-north pole)
Right LI 5 (bio-south pole)

The magnets were secured with tape and the child sent home with instructions to the father to wait three days and call me regarding any changes.

Results: About an hour after they had left the office I got a call from the father. I asked him what was going on and he simply told me, Shes eating! This pleased us all, but I asked him to continue monitoring the situation for a few days. Three days later he called to say there had been only one instance of her not eating during that time, and she had gotten over it quickly. I instructed him to take off the magnets and call me if the problem reoccurred.

Synopsis: This was an interesting instance of a simple meridian pathology which was easily reversed. Several years later I spoke with her father who said that she had never had any futher problem swallowing solid foods.

Courtesy of:
Bruce Eichelberger OMD, L.Ac.
Falling Waters Healing Spa
460 California Avenue
Reno, NV 89509
(775) 329-2888

Last modified: September 6, 2009  Tags: ,  В·  Posted in: EENT, Neurological, Well-Being