Ascites according to Chinese Medicine

What is ascites?

Ascites is the accumulation or retention of free fluid between the tissues lining the abdomen and abdominal organs. The fluid may be serous (made of serum), made of blood, or the result of inflammation or tumour metastasis to the peritoneum.

What causes ascites according to TCM?

There are 8 patterns of disharmony in our database that are associated with ascites. TCM sees our body (and mind) as a holistic system in which health issues stem from imbalances, known as "patterns of disharmony". These patterns can manifest in a wide range of symptoms and illnesses, such as ascites here.

Most of the patterns associated with ascites are "Full" (also called "Excess") in nature. This means that according to TCM ascites is more likely to be an acute condition, caused by an excess of pathological factors or substances that overwhelm the body's defensive capabilities.

"Dampness" is the most common of these pathogenic factors, present in 2 of the patterns associated with ascites. Other pathogenic factors and excesses which might contribute to ascites include "Cold", "Wind-Damp" and "Wind".

For more details on the underlying causes and patterns behind ascites, refer to this comprehensive page on the subject.

Herbal formulas used in TCM for ascites

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Individual herbs used in TCM for ascites

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Acupuncture and acupressure points for ascites

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TCM dietary and lifestyle recommendations that might help with ascites

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