Spleen Yang Deficiency

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Pattern factsheet

Chinese name: 脾阳虚

Pinyin name: Pí Yáng Xū

Associated TCM concepts: Spleen Yang Deficiency / Empty

Related conditions: Sciatica Hypertension Hypothyroidism and fourteen other conditions

Diagnosis

Common symptoms: Edema Fatigue Cold limbs Weak Limbs Loose stools and three other symptoms

Pulse type(s): Deep (Chen), Slow (Chi), Weak (Ruo)

Tongue color: Pale

Generally speaking, Spleen Yang Deficiency often develops from Spleen Qi Deficiency, but it is more extensive and severe, with additional Cold symptoms, such as a cold feeling and cold limbs. It is because Spleen Yang fails to warm the body and Organs. Because of that, the body metabolism get slower and some food are not digested properly and passes directly into the stools. Since the Spleen fails to perform the function of transforming and transporting fluids, the circulation of Body Fluids is disturbed, causing symptoms such as Oedema, vaginal discharge and Lung mucus.

The causes are similar to these of Spleen Qi Deficiency, along with surplus consumption of cold, raw foods and drinks and overexposure to cold damp environments and climates.

Related conditions

Hypertension Pelvic inflammatory disease Trigeminal neuralgia Menieres disease Congestive heart failure Rheumatoid arthritis Lumbar disc disease Sciatica Chronic glomerulonephritis Hyperaldosteronism Hypothyroidism Ascites from cirrhosis Orthostatic hypotension Basilar insufficiency Osteoarthritis Piriformis syndrome Postconcussion headache

Diagnosing Spleen Yang Deficiency

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

Pulse type(s): Deep (Chen), slow (Chi) or weak (Ruo)

Tongue color: Pale

Possible symptoms: Edema Fatigue Cold limbs Weak Limbs Loose stools Poor appetite Feeling of cold Vagina discharge

Diagnosing a pattern in Chinese Medicine is no easy feat and should be left to professional practitioners.

In particular one has to know how to differentiate between different types of pulses and tongue coatings, shapes and colors. Here patients with Spleen Yang Deficiency will tend to exhibit deep (Chen), slow (Chi) or weak (Ruo) pulses as well as a pale tongue.

Practitioners also learn to read from a long list of seemingly unrelated symptoms. Here patients with Spleen Yang Deficiency might experience symptoms like cold limbs, feeling of cold, loose stools and edema (full list here above).

Herbal formulas used to treat Spleen Yang Deficiency

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.

Formula summary

Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang is a 10-ingredient Chinese Medicine formula with Milkvetch Roots (Huang Qi) as a principal ingredient. Invented in 1247, it belongs to the category of formulas that tonify Qi.

Besides Spleen Yang Deficiency, Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang is also used to treat Qi Deficiency or Qi Collapsing or Qi Sinking.

Read more about Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang

Zhen Wu Tang

Source date: 220 AD

Number of ingredients: 5 herbs

Key actions: Warms and tonifies the Yang and Qi of the Spleen and Kidneys. Eliminates Dampness.

Formula summary

Zhen Wu Tang is a 5-ingredient Chinese Medicine formula with Prepared Aconite (Zhi Fu Zi) as a principal ingredient. Invented in 220 AD, it belongs to the category of formulas that warm and transform water and Dampness.

Besides Spleen Yang Deficiency, Zhen Wu Tang is also used to treat Phlegm in the Joints or Spleen or Kidney Yang Deficiency.

Read more about Zhen Wu Tang

Yi Huang Tang

Source date: 1826 AD

Number of ingredients: 5 herbs

Key actions: Strengthens the Spleen. Dries Dampness. Clears Heat. Stops vaginal discharge.

Formula summary

Yi Huang Tang is a 5-ingredient Chinese Medicine formula with Yam (Shan Yao) and Foxnut Seeds (Qian Shi) as principal ingredients. Invented in 1826 AD, it belongs to the category of formulas that secure irregular uterine bleeding and stop vaginal discharge.

Besides Spleen Yang Deficiency, Yi Huang Tang is also used to treat Damp-Heat or Spleen Deficiency.

Read more about Yi Huang Tang

Diet recommendations

Eat beef, lamb, rice, millet, barley, whole grains, winter squash, cooked vegetables, greens and plenty of protein, all cooked foods and avoid raw or cold foods which are hard to digest.