Urethritis according to Chinese Medicine

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Urethritis factsheet

In Chinese Medicine, urethritis 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 urethritis can be caused by three different patterns.

To understand whether someone's urethritis 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 urethritis alone. For instance when urethritis is caused by the pattern Summer Heat, patients also experience symptoms such as fever, sweating, thirst and irritability. Similarly, patients with Summer Heat typically exhibit rapid (Shu) or soggy (Ru) pulses as well as a tongue with yellow coating.

We've listed below a description of the three patterns associated with urethritis 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 four formulas that can help treat the various patterns associated with urethritis, depending on which pattern fits your profile.

The three "patterns of disharmony" associated with urethritis

Talc (Hua Shi) is the key herb for Liu Yi San, a formula used for Summer Heat

Summer Heat

Pulse type(s): Rapid (Shu), Soggy (Ru)

Tongue coating: Yellow coating

Recommended herbal formula: Liu Yi San

Symptoms: Fever Thirst Sweating Diarrhea Vomiting Irritability Urinary difficulty

Urethritis might be due to Summer Heat if the condition is paired with typical pattern symptoms such as fever, sweating, thirst and irritability. Similarly, patients with Summer Heat typically exhibit rapid (Shu) or soggy (Ru) pulses as well as a tongue with yellow coating.

Read more about Summer Heat here

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

Damp-Heat in the Bladder

Urethritis might be due to Damp-Heat in the Bladder if the condition is paired with typical pattern symptoms such as painful urinary dribbling and stony painful urinary dribbling.

Read more about Damp-Heat in the Bladder here

The Triple Burner is a so-called "Fu" Organ. Learn more about the Triple Burner in Chinese Medicine

Damp-Heat in the Lower Burner

Pulse type(s): Rapid (Shu), Slippery (Hua)

Tongue coating: Yellow coating

Recommended herbal formula: Ba Zheng San

Symptoms: Dry mouth Dry throat Painful urination Urinary retention Lower abdominal pain Scanty and dark urine

Urethritis might be due to Damp-Heat in the Lower Burner if the condition is paired with typical pattern symptoms such as scanty and dark urine, painful urination, dry mouth and dry throat. Similarly, patients with Damp-Heat in the Lower Burner typically exhibit rapid (Shu) or slippery (Hua) pulses as well as a tongue with yellow coating.

Read more about Damp-Heat in the Lower Burner here

The four herbal formulas that might help with urethritis

Liu Yi San

Source date: 1172 AD

Number of ingredients: 2 herbs

Key actions: Clears Summer-Heat. Drains Dampness. Supplements Qi.

Why might Liu Yi San help with urethritis?

Because it is a formula often recommended to help with the patterns Summer Heat and Damp-Heat in the Bladder which are sometimes associated with urethritis. 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 Liu Yi San here

Ba Zheng San

Source date: 1107 AD

Number of ingredients: 9 herbs

Key actions: Clears Heat and Fire. Promotes urination. Unblocks painful urinary dribbling.

Why might Ba Zheng San help with urethritis?

Because it is a formula often recommended to help treat Damp-Heat in the Lower Burner, a pattern sometimes associated with urethritis. If it looks like you might suffer from Damp-Heat in the Lower Burner, this formula might help (although please seek confirmation with a professional practitioner beforehand).

Read more about Ba Zheng San here

Wu Lin San

Source date: 1107 AD

Number of ingredients: 5 herbs

Key actions: Clears heat. Cools the Blood. Promotes urination. Unblocks painful urinary dribbling.

Why might Wu Lin San help with urethritis?

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

Read more about Wu Lin San here

Shi Wei San

Source date: 1687 AD

Number of ingredients: 5 herbs

Key actions: Clears heat. Promotes the resolution of Dampness. Unblocks painful urinary dribbling. Expels stones.

Why might Shi Wei San help with urethritis?

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

Read more about Shi Wei San here