Scabiesaccording to TCM

What is Scabies?

Scabies is a highly contagious skin condition caused by a tiny mite called Sarcoptes scabiei. These mites burrow into the skin, causing intense itching and a pimple-like rash. The condition is spread through direct, prolonged skin-to-skin contact and is known for its characteristic symptom of severe itching, which often worsens at night.

Sub-symptoms of scabies can include rashes or lesions in specific areas caused by mite infestation, sometimes resembling bites. Prompt and effective treatment is crucial to prevent spreading and alleviate discomfort.

How Does TCM View Scabies?

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) approaches scabies from the perspective of external pathogenic factors invading the body. Unlike Western medicine, which focuses on the mite as the primary cause, TCM considers scabies as a disharmony caused by external pathogens like Dampness and Wind.

Treatment in TCM aims to expel these pathogens and restore balance, rather than just eliminating the mite. This holistic approach looks at the individual's overall health and how it contributes to their vulnerability to such infestations.

Causes of Scabies According to TCM

In TCM, scabies is often attributed to the invasion of external pathogenic factors such as Dampness and Wind. These factors can disrupt the normal balance and functions of the skin, leading to symptoms like itching and rash.

TCM believes that a weakened body constitution may also make an individual more susceptible to these external factors. Addressing scabies in TCM involves identifying and treating the underlying imbalances and strengthening the body's defenses against external pathogens. This approach is comprehensive, focusing on both the symptoms and root causes of the condition.

TCM Herbal Formulas for Scabies

For treating scabies, TCM recommends using external formulas that target the specific patterns of disharmony. One such formula is Ku Shen Tang, which includes Sophora Roots (Ku Shen) as a key herb.

This formula is known for its properties to clear Damp-Wind, which are considered primary factors in scabies according to TCM. The use of these herbs and formulas depends on the individual's specific condition and pattern of imbalance, underlining TCM's personalized approach to treatment. This strategy not only addresses the symptoms but also works to restore the body's natural balance and resilience.

See more details below about Ku Shen Tang, a herbal formula used to address scabies.

  • By Formula Type
  • External formulas for external disorders

TCM Herbs for Scabies

Explore below some TCM herbs used to address scabies, organized by herb category.

  • By Herb Category
  • Herbs that dispel wind and dampness
  • Herbs for external application
  • Herbs that clear heat and dry dampness
  • Herbs that expel parasites
  • Cathartic herbs that drain downward
  • Herbs that drain dampness
  • Herbs that clear heat and relieve toxicity

"Herbs that dispel Wind and Dampness" recommended for scabies

Herb Formulas they belong to (if applicable)
Black-Tail Snakes (Wu shao she) Not applicable
Erythrinae Barks (Hai Tong Pi) Not applicable
Viper Snakes (Fu she) Not applicable

"Herbs for external application" recommended for scabies

Herb Formulas they belong to (if applicable)
Realgar (Xiong Huang) Not applicable
Sesame Oil (Ma You) Not applicable
Sulfur (Liu Huang) Not applicable

"Herbs that clear Heat and dry Dampness" recommended for scabies

Herb Formulas they belong to (if applicable)
Sophora Roots (Ku Shen) Ku Shen Tang
Dittany Root Bark (Bai Xian Pi) Not applicable