Stagnant Liver Qi turning into Fire

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Pattern factsheet

Chinese name: 肝郁化火

Pinyin name: Gān Yù Huà Huǒ

Associated TCM concepts: Qi Stagnation Liver Liver Qi Stagnation

Diagnosis

Common symptoms: Anger Thirst Red eyes Red face Moodiness and sixteen other symptoms

Pulse type(s): Wiry (Xian)

Tongue description: Red on the sides

This pattern develops from Liver Qi Stagnation, which creates excessive amount of Heat and then turn into Liver Heat. It manifests with a feeling of heat, a red face and desire to drink.

From a mental emotional perspective, patients tend to be irritable, anxious, moody and prone to outbursts of anger. This differs from Liver Qi Stagnation where patients are more able to repress their anger.

Diagnosing Stagnant Liver Qi turning into Fire

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

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 Stagnant Liver Qi turning into Fire will tend to exhibit wiry (Xian) pulses as well as a red points on the sides tongue.

Practitioners also learn to read from a long list of seemingly unrelated symptoms. Here patients with Stagnant Liver Qi turning into Fire might experience symptoms like menstrual cramps, anger, thirst and constipation (full list here above).

Herbal formulas used to treat Stagnant Liver Qi turning into Fire

Dan Zhi Xiao Yao San

Source date: 2002 AD

Number of ingredients: 8 herbs

Key actions: Clears Liver Fire from Stagnant Liver Qi.

Formula summary

Dan Zhi Xiao Yao San is a 8-ingredient Chinese Medicine formula with Mudan Peony Bark (Mu Dan Pi) as a principal ingredient. Invented in 2002 AD, it belongs to the category of formulas that clear Liver-Heat.

Besides Stagnant Liver Qi turning into Fire, Dan Zhi Xiao Yao San is also used to treat Kidney Yin Deficiency or Stagnant Liver-Qi turning into Fire.

Read more about Dan Zhi Xiao Yao San

Diet recommendations

Avoid excessive hot-energy foods (such as red meat, spices and alcohol) 

Try other therapies such as cupping over the back and breathing exercises. 

Most importantly find a way to deal with negative emotions like anger, frustration, resentment, irritability, mood swings. It is better to express and release them instead of keeping them inside. Find a job or hobby that is enjoyable or fulfilling. 

Avoid mental over-work, physical over-exertion or excessive sexual activity. Take proper rest after all these exercises or work. Try going to bed before 11 pm. 

Try regular exercises such as Yoga, Tai Chi, or Qi Gong, swimming, dancing or walking in the nature.

Most important herbs used to treat Stagnant Liver Qi turning into Fire