What is Oriental Medicine
Current status of analysis methods used in Japanese acupuncture and moxibustion treatment
Seino Acupuncture and Orthopedics Clinic
Masaki Yamada・Noriko Maruyama・Toshimune Namba
Asako Murata・Mitsunori Seino
[ Introduction ]
Acupuncture and moxibustion treatment has been used in Japan since around 410, and thus dates back 1600 years or more. The acupuncture and moxibustion treatment performed in Japan differs greatly from the methods of treatment used in China. For this reason, many differences also exist in the methods of body analysis used in treatment. This paper describes the body analysis methods used during acupuncture and moxibustion treatment in Japan.
[ Main Text ]
Body analysis is carried out to determine treatment policy during acupuncture and moxibustion treatment.
Since ancient times, information has been obtained from patients using four techniques of examination in a procedure known as ‘shishin’(four diagnostic methods). ‘Shishin’ comprises ‘boushin’ (inspection), ‘bunshin’ (auscultation and olfaction), ‘monshin’ (inquiring), and ‘sesshin’ (palpation). The body analysis methods currently used in acupuncture and moxibustion treatment in Japan may be broadly divided into those based on contemporary medicine, those based on Chinese medicine, and those based on acupuncture and moxibustion treatment procedures passed down as a Japanese traditional medical art. Body analysis methods based on contemporary medicine analyze the symptoms and condition of the patient from the perspectives of anatomy, physiology, etc., based on the diagnoses suggested by contemporary medicine. Those methods based on Chinese medicine use ‘shishin’ for analysis. In this analysis, a methodology known as ‘benshou’ (pattern identification) is used. Numerous body analysis methods based on traditional acupuncture and moxibustion treatment procedures have been passed down, among which, ‘myakushin-hou’ (pulse diagnosis), ‘fukushin-hou’ (abdominal diagnosis), and examination of the body surface are regarded as important. The information obtained from body analysis is of direct clinical relevance, as it is used for determining treatment points and assessing the body immediately after treatment. Body analysis methods based on traditional acupuncture and moxibustion treatment procedures has the advantage of being easily reproducible.
[ Discussion ]
Body analysis methods based on contemporary medicine and Chinese medicine are useful for constructing systems of diagnostics. However, given that acupuncture and moxibustion treatment is characterized by the search for treatment points among meridians and acupuncture points, these body analysis methods cannot readily be described as having direct clinical relevance. The body analysis methods based on acupuncture and moxibustion treatment procedures that have been passed down as Japanese traditional medical art are based on ‘myakujoushin’ (pulse quality diagnosis), ‘myakusashin’ (pulse position diagnosis), and abdominal ‘shakuju’ (abdominal mass),and these methods are directly clinically relevant and easily reproducible. Systematization of Japanese body analysis methods would contribute to the worldwide spread of acupuncture and moxibustion therapy.
[ Conclusion ]
I have reported the current status of body analysis methods used in Japanese acupuncture and moxibustion treatment. The systematization of Japanese body analysis methods would facilitate the worldwide spread of acupuncture and moxibustion therapy.