Stomach Dilationaccording to TCM

What is Stomach Dilation?

Stomach dilation, a medical condition, is characterized by an abnormal enlargement or stretching of the stomach. This condition can result from various causes, including overeating, blockages, or disorders affecting stomach motility.

When the stomach dilates, it can lead to discomfort, pain, and a range of digestive issues. In severe cases, it may require immediate medical attention to prevent more serious complications. Understanding the underlying causes of stomach dilation is crucial for effective treatment and prevention.

How does TCM view Stomach Dilation?

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) approaches stomach dilation differently from Western medicine. In TCM, this condition is seen as a manifestation of imbalances within the body's energy systems. The focus is not solely on the Stomach but on the interplay between various organs and meridians.

TCM emphasizes identifying the specific patterns of disharmony causing the symptom. This holistic view allows for a more comprehensive understanding and treatment of stomach dilation, looking beyond the symptom to the root causes in the body's energy system.

Causes of Stomach Dilation According to TCM

In Traditional Chinese Medicine, stomach dilation is often linked to specific imbalances, such as Damp-Cold, Rebellious Liver Qi invading the Stomach, or Kidney Yang Deficiency with Water overflowing. Damp-Cold refers to a condition where Cold and Damp qualities accumulate in the body, leading to sluggish digestive functions and resulting in stomach dilation.

Rebellious Liver Qi invading the Stomach is another pattern where the disruption of normal Qi flow affects the Stomach, causing symptoms like nausea, vomiting, and distension.

Lastly, Kidney Yang Deficiency with Water overflowing represents a state where the body's fundamental yang energy is weak, causing fluids to accumulate abnormally and contribute to an enlarged stomach. These patterns exemplify TCM's holistic approach, viewing stomach dilation as a symptom of broader systemic issues.

TCM Herbal Formulas for Stomach Dilation

To address the specific patterns associated with stomach dilation, TCM employs targeted formulas and herbs. In cases of Damp-Cold, formulas like Wei Ling Tang, featuring key herbs such as Water plantain (Ze Xie), are used to dispel the dampness and warm the interior, thus alleviating the condition.

For treating Rebellious Liver Qi invading the Stomach, Xuan Fu Dai Zhe Tang, with Inula Flowers (Xuan Fu Hua), is recommended. This formula is designed to redirect the Rebellious Qi downward, restoring harmony between the liver and stomach.

In situations involving Kidney Yang Deficiency with Water overflowing, a different approach is taken using formulas like Wu Ling San, which also includes Water plantain (Ze Xie). This formula works to strengthen the Kidney Yang, promoting the proper management of body fluids and addressing the root cause of the dilation. These treatments demonstrate TCM’s tailored approach, focusing on the unique pattern of disharmony in each individual.

Explore below some TCM herbal formulas used to address stomach dilation, organized by formula type.

  • By Formula Type
  • Formulas that expel dampness
  • Formulas that promote urination and leach out dampness
  • Formulas for a rebellious qi

TCM Herbs for Stomach Dilation

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

  • By Herb Category
  • Herbs that drain dampness
  • Aromatic herbs that transform dampness
  • Warm herbs that transform phlegm and stop cough