Chronic rhinitis according to Chinese Medicine

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In Chinese Medicine, chronic rhinitis can be associated with three so-called "patterns of disharmony". Chinese Medicine sees the body as a system, not a sum of isolated parts. A "pattern" is when the system's harmony is disrupted. It is not equivalent to the Western concept of "disease", as a matter of fact here chronic rhinitis can be caused by three different patterns.

To understand whether someone's chronic rhinitis might be caused by a given pattern, one needs to look for signs and symptoms associated with the pattern beyond what one might typically experience from chronic rhinitis alone. For instance when chronic rhinitis is caused by the pattern Spleen and Stomach Qi Deficiency, patients also experience symptoms such as dizziness, unsteadiness, blurred vision and deafness. Similarly, patients with Spleen and Stomach Qi Deficiency typically exhibit weak (Ruo) pulses as well as a pale tongue.

We've listed below a description of the three patterns associated with chronic rhinitis so that you can start to get an understanding of the various possibilities according to Chinese Medicine.

Once identified, patterns are often treated using herbal formulas. Drinking herbal infusions is the most common remedy in Chinese Medicine, together with acupuncture. Here we detail below two formulas that can help treat the various patterns associated with chronic rhinitis, depending on which pattern fits your profile.

The three "patterns of disharmony" associated with chronic rhinitis

The Spleen is a so-called "Zang" Organ. Learn more about the Spleen in Chinese Medicine

Spleen and Stomach Qi Deficiency

Pulse type(s): Weak (Ruo)

Tongue color: Pale

Recommended herbal formula: Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang

Symptoms: Deafness Tinnitus Dizziness Weak voice Unsteadiness Loose stools Poor appetite Blurred vision Pale complexion Shortness of breath

Chronic rhinitis might be due to Spleen and Stomach Qi Deficiency if the condition is paired with typical pattern symptoms such as dizziness, unsteadiness, blurred vision and deafness. Similarly, patients with Spleen and Stomach Qi Deficiency typically exhibit weak (Ruo) pulses as well as a pale tongue.

Read more about Spleen and Stomach Qi Deficiency here

Milkvetch Roots (Huang Qi) is the key herb for Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang, a formula used for Qi Deficiency Fever

Qi Deficiency Fever

Pulse type(s): Empty (Xu)

Tongue color: Pale

Tongue shape: Swollen

Recommended herbal formula: Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang

Symptoms: Aversion to cold Spontaneous sweating Thirst for warm drinks Intermittent fever that worsens upon exertion

Chronic rhinitis might be due to Qi Deficiency Fever if the condition is paired with typical pattern symptoms such as intermittent fever that worsens upon exertion, spontaneous sweating, aversion to cold and thirst for warm drinks. Similarly, patients with Qi Deficiency Fever typically exhibit empty (Xu) pulses as well as a pale tongue.

Read more about Qi Deficiency Fever here

The Kidneys is a so-called "Zang" Organ. Learn more about the Kidneys in Chinese Medicine

Kidney Yang Deficiency

Pulse type(s): Empty (Xu), Weak (Ruo)

Tongue coating: Thin white coating

Tongue color: Pale

Tongue shape: Swollen

Recommended herbal formula: Shen Qi Wan

Symptoms: Incontinence Lower back pain Urinary difficulty Lower abdominal pressure Weakness of the lower extremities Cold sensation in the lower half of the body

Chronic rhinitis might be due to Kidney Yang Deficiency if the condition is paired with typical pattern symptoms such as lower back pain, weakness of the lower extremities, cold sensation in the lower half of the body and lower abdominal pressure. Similarly, patients with Kidney Yang Deficiency typically exhibit empty (Xu) or weak (Ruo) pulses as well as a pale tongue with thin white coating.

Read more about Kidney Yang Deficiency here

The two herbal formulas that might help with chronic rhinitis

Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang

Source date: 1247

Number of ingredients: 10 herbs

Key actions: Tonifies Qi of the Spleen and Stomach (Middle Burner). Raises the Yang. Detoxifies. Lifts what has sunken.

Why might Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang help with chronic rhinitis?

Because it is a formula often recommended to help with the patterns Spleen and Stomach Qi Deficiency and Qi Deficiency Fever which are sometimes associated with chronic rhinitis. If any of these patterns look like something you might suffer from, this formula might help (although please seek confirmation with a professional practitioner beforehand).

Read more about Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang here

Shen Qi Wan

Source date: 220 AD

Number of ingredients: 8 herbs

Key actions: Tonifies and warms Kidney Yang.

Why might Shen Qi Wan help with chronic rhinitis?

Because it is a formula often recommended to help treat Kidney Yang Deficiency, a pattern sometimes associated with chronic rhinitis. If it looks like you might suffer from Kidney Yang Deficiency, this formula might help (although please seek confirmation with a professional practitioner beforehand).

Read more about Shen Qi Wan here