The Chinese Medicine Treatment of Childhood Asthma, Wheezing with Phlegm
Chief Complaint: wheezing, phlegm
Western Diagnosis: childhood asthma
Medical History: Child is 7 yr. old boy who has had this problem since diagnosis at 6 mos. old. Allergies to nuts, cats, feathers, and is sensitive to diary (uses soy/rice milk, but will eat cheese and eggs). He is an active child, enjoys socializing with his friends, and is very much a “boy”. He won’t come “out of the rain” unless he is told to, even though he knows the consequences will be sickness. When he gets sick, he’s down and needs to have extra medicines, such as, Pediapred. Mother uses a combination of natural and prescribed medications; the homeopathics for strengthening and for minor symptoms, the western for keeping him out of the hospital and because the schools and daycares will not administer herbs. When severe, has chest tightness.
Questioning exam: When questioning about diet, the boy was breastfed for his first year, and then went on to soy formula. It was fairly easy to restrict foods that created phlegm his first couple of years. Once he was with sitters, etc. more sugar was given to him and his diet seemed to include more fats as with cheeses. He appeared to have a copious amount of phlegm and would cough a lot in the AMs, sometimes until he threw up. Once that happened, he seemed to be better. He also had, and still does, dry, itchy skin especially on his legs, arms, and hands. As a baby his face and head were rashy, as well. Hydrocortisone and Urtica Urens are used for the itching. He has always used either an Albuterol inhaler or nebulizer and now takes Singulair once a day which seems to keep his need for his other medications down to a minimum. Chamomile is used for calming.
Pulse exam: Pulses have usually been rapid and slippery. Sometimes they are weak and sometimes slightly forceful. Assuming his western medications make his pulse forceful.
Tongue exam: Normal red with slightly milky coating. Sometimes there is a strong odor even after brushing teeth. (Note- he does a very quick brushing of his teeth – maybe he is simply not cleaning his mouth well.)
OM Diagnosis: wind heat turning into phlegm heat
Lung qi deficiency
Treatment Principle: expel wind heat, resolve phlegm, tonify Lung qi
Point Prescription: L5, St40, K3, R17, L10, Sp6, Dingchuan
Due to the child’s fear of acupuncture, the stimulation from the Pointer Plus was used at times.
Herbal Formula: Ding chuan tang
Spongia Tosta and Lung histamine prescribed by a Naturopathic doctor, also.
Results: Results are usually good. More herbal and homeopathic remedies are used than the acupuncture because of his fear of the needles. He understands his illness quite well for his age and is interested in working with the different medicines to keep himself alive and functioning. He sometimes questions why he was born with this and his brother and sister weren’t (as if he were singled out). His mother also has asthma and a history of bronchitis, so he knows he is not alone.
Mary E.K. Denison Dipl. OM, L. Ac.
Rapha-El Acupuncture & Massage
4900 30th Ave. S.
Minneapolis, MN 55417-1308