Lung Yin Deficiency

At a glance

Key attributes

Chinese name: 肺阴虚      Pinyin name: Fèi Yīn Xū

Pattern nature: Empty

Pattern hierarchy: Specific pattern under Yin Deficiency

Common combinations: Kidney and Lung Yin Deficiency

Causes

Precursor patterns: Kidney Yin Deficiency Lung Qi Deficiency Stomach Yin Deficiency and three other possible precursors

Common causes: 1. Excessive use of voice, 2. Smoking, 3. Emotional stress

Diagnosis

Common symptoms: Thin chest Hoarse voice Tickly throat Aversion to speak

Pulse type(s): Rapid (Shu), Empty (Xu), Floating (Fu)

Tongue description: Normal or red color with no coating

Treatment

Treatment principle: Tonify Lung Yin, nourish Body Fluids, clear Empty-Heat if necessary.

Common formulas: Yang Yin Qing Fei Tang Qing Zao Jiu Fei Tang

Pathology

Exterior Heat and Dryness can invade the Lungs and exhausts the Body Fluids. If it is not dealt with for a long time, it leads to Lung Yin Deficiency. Typical manifestations are dry cough, throat and mouth, aversion to speak as well as Hoarse voice. 

Other factors can cause this pattern such as the Deficiency of Kidneys or Stomach Yin as well as prolonged Lung Qi Deficiency due to excessive smoking or use of voice.

Empty-Heat symptoms appear if the Lung Yin Deficiency condition is not treated for a while. Patients can feel malar flush, low-grade fever as well as Heat in the palms and chest, especially in the evenings. 

Lung Yin Deficiency generally occurs in middle-aged and elderly patients as a result of overwork, irregular diet and smoking. However, it can also occur in a child after whooping cough.

Causes

Precursor patterns: Lung Yin Deficiency can derive from Kidney Yin Deficiency Lung Qi Deficiency Stomach Yin Deficiency Lung Dryness Lung Heat Dry-Phlegm in the Lungs

Excessive use of voice : Excessive use of the voice over many years have a drying effect, which can eventually develop to Lung Yin Deficiency.

Smoking : Tobacco or cannabis is hot in nature. They can dry the the Lungs and leads to Lung Yin Deficiency.

Emotional stress : Sadness and grief normally deplete Qi. However, when
a person has a pre-existing constitutional tendency to
Yin Deficiency, these emotions may deplete Lung Yin.

Diagnosing Lung Yin Deficiency

Pulse type(s): Rapid (Shu), empty (Xu) or floating (Fu)

Tongue description: Normal or red color with no coating

Main symptoms: Thin chest Hoarse voice Tickly throat Aversion to speak

Diagnosis commentary: Key characteristic symptoms of this pattern are the dry cough, weak hoarse voice, dry
throat and night sweating.

Treating Lung Yin Deficiency

Treatment principle

Tonify Lung Yin, nourish Body Fluids, clear Empty-Heat if necessary. 

Herbal formulas used to treat Lung Yin Deficiency

Qing Zao Jiu Fei Tang

Source date: 1658 AD

Number of ingredients: 9 herbs

Key actions: Clears dryness. Moistens the Lungs.

Formula summary

Qing Zao Jiu Fei Tang is a 9-ingredient Chinese Medicine formula. Invented in 1658 AD, it belongs to the category of formulas that disperse Dryness and moisten.

Besides Lung Yin Deficiency, Qing Zao Jiu Fei Tang is also used to treat Dry-Heat or Dry-Fire.

Read more about Qing Zao Jiu Fei Tang

Yang Yin Qing Fei Tang

Source date: the 18th century

Number of ingredients: 8 herbs

Key actions: Nourishes the Yin. Improves throat. Resolves toxicity. Clears the Lungs.

Formula summary

Yang Yin Qing Fei Tang is a 8-ingredient Chinese Medicine formula. Invented in the 18th century, it belongs to the category of formulas that enrich Yin and moisten Dryness.

Read more about Yang Yin Qing Fei Tang

Diet recommendations

Pay attention to avoid foods that are hot, spicy, fried and greasy. Eat grains, protein, vegetables and greens. If digestion function is well, also try some fruits (especially pears) and juices. Some specific foods are recommended such as asparagus, duck, black beans and milk. 

As for other therapies, it is recommended to use oil massage, breathing exercises, cupping over upper back and meditation.

The patients should avoid using saunas or hot tubs. They should also avoid go to bed late and find a way to balance their overloaded work and emotional stress. Resting is very important in replenishing Yin, during the day and at night. 

As for sports, avoid intense aerobic exercises or anything cause extensive sweating. It is recommended to try Yoga, Tai Chi, Qi Gong, stretching, light walk and swimming. 

Related conditions

Absence of menstruation Peptic ulcers Hypertension Chronic bronchitis Asthma Pneumonia Pertussis Bronchiectasis Diabetes Laryngitis Lung atrophy Acute bronchitis Reactive lymphoid hyperplasia Radiation therapy side effects

Special highlight: the link between absence of menstruation and Lung Yin Deficiency

Lily Bulbs (Bai He) is the key herb for Bai He Gu Jin Tang, a formula used for absence of menstruation caused by Lung Yin Deficiency

Typical symptoms for absence of menstruation caused by Lung Yin Deficiency: Red lips Dry cough Depression Blood spit Chest pain Malar flush Frequent sighing Shortness of breath Hot palms and soles

Recommended herbal formula: Bai He Gu Jin Tang

An excessive amount of grief and sadness injures the Lung Qi and leads to a situation where the Lungs fail to circulate and disseminate Qi around the body. Qi is the driving force for the Blood flow in vessels and channels. This results in Blood Deficiency and the absence of menstruation.

It typically progresses from a Lung Qi Deficiency that is not treated for a while and degenerates into Lung Yin Deficiency.

The treatment principle is to moisten the Lungs, nourish Lung Yin and Liver Blood,...Read more about absence of menstruation

Consequence patterns

Kidney and Lung Yin Deficiency

A chronic condition of Lung Yin deficiency may lead to Kidney Yin Deficiency too

Kidney Yin Deficiency

Lung Yin Deficiency frequently derives from Kidney Yin Deficiency. The reverse is also true.