Enuresis according to Chinese Medicine

pediatric enuresis redirects here

Enuresis can be the consequence of several so-called “patterns of disharmony” in Chinese Medicine.

Chinese Medicine sees the body as a system, not a sum of isolated parts. A "pattern" is when the system's harmony is disrupted, leading to symptoms or signs that something is wrong (like enuresis here). It is similar to the concept of disease in Western Medicine but not quite: a Western disease can often be explained by several Chinese patterns and vice-versa.

A pattern often manifests itself in a combination of symptoms that, at first glance, do not seem necessarily related to each others. For instance here enuresis is often associated with frequent urination, feeling of cold and lower back pain in the pattern “/tcm-education-center/patterns/bladder-deficient-and-cold”. As you will see below, we have in record two patterns that can cause enuresis.

Once identified, patterns are treated using medicinal herbs, acupuncture, and other therapies. In the case of enuresis we’ve identified five herbal formulas that may help treat patterns behind the symptom.

We’ve also selected below the five medicinal herbs that we think are most likely to help treat enuresis.

The two "patterns of disharmony" that can cause enuresis

In Chinese Medicine enuresis is a symptom for 2 patterns that we have on record. Below is a small explanation for each of them with links for more details.

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

Bladder Deficient and Cold

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

In addition to enuresis, other symptoms associated with /tcm-education-center/patterns/bladder-deficient-and-cold include frequent urination, feeling of cold and lower back pain.

/tcm-education-center/patterns/bladder-deficient-and-cold is often treated with Sang Piao Xiao San, a herbal formula made of 8 herbs (including Praying Mantis Egg-Cases - Sang Piao Shao - as a key herb). Sang Piao Xiao San belongs to the category of "formulas that secure essence and stop enuresis", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Regulates and tonifies the Heart and Kidneys".

Read more about Bladder Deficient and Cold here

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

Kidney Qi not Firm

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

Tongue color: Pale

Kidney Qi not Firm means Kidney Qi Deficiency. Two characteristics are typical in this pattern. Firstly, it is a type of Kidney Yang Deficiency with the associated Cold symptoms. Secondly, it is a type of sinking of Kidneys Qi, thus with many ‘leaking’ downwards symptoms.

In addition to enuresis, other symptoms associated with /tcm-education-center/patterns/kidney-qi-not-firm include frequent urination, premature ejaculation and feeling of cold.

/tcm-education-center/patterns/kidney-qi-not-firm is often treated with You Gui Wan, a herbal formula made of 10 herbs (including Prepared Aconite - Zhi Fu Zi - as a key herb). You Gui Wan belongs to the category of "formulas that warm yang and tonify", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Warms and tonifies Kidney Yang".

Read more about Kidney Qi not Firm here

Five herbal formulas that might help with enuresis

Sang Piao Xiao San

Source date: 1116 AD

Number of ingredients: 8 herbs

Key actions: Regulates and tonifies the Heart and Kidneys. Stabilizes the Essence. Stops leakage.

Why might Sang Piao Xiao San help with enuresis?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern '/tcm-education-center/patterns/bladder-deficient-and-cold' of which enuresis is a symptom.

Read more about Sang Piao Xiao San here

Suo Quan Wan

Source date: 1227 AD

Number of ingredients: 3 herbs

Key actions: Warms the Kidneys. Dispels cold. Reduces urinary frequency. Stops leakage.

Why might Suo Quan Wan help with enuresis?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern '/tcm-education-center/patterns/bladder-deficient-and-cold' of which enuresis is a symptom.

Read more about Suo Quan Wan here

You Gui Wan

Source date: 1624 AD

Number of ingredients: 10 herbs

Key actions: Warms and tonifies Kidney Yang. Replenishes the Essence. Tonifies the Blood.

Why might You Gui Wan help with enuresis?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern '/tcm-education-center/patterns/kidney-qi-not-firm' of which enuresis is a symptom.

Read more about You Gui Wan here

Jin Suo Gu Jing Wan

Source date: 1682 AD

Number of ingredients: 6 herbs

Key actions: Stabilizes the Kidneys. Binds up the semen.

Why might Jin Suo Gu Jing Wan help with enuresis?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern '/tcm-education-center/patterns/kidney-qi-not-firm' of which enuresis is a symptom.

Read more about Jin Suo Gu Jing Wan here

Fu Tu Dan

Source date: 1107 AD

Number of ingredients: 5 herbs

Key actions: Stabilizes the Kidney Qi. Strengthens the Spleen. Stops leakage.

Why might Fu Tu Dan help with enuresis?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern '/tcm-education-center/patterns/kidney-qi-not-firm' of which enuresis is a symptom.

Read more about Fu Tu Dan here

Acupuncture points used for enuresis

The five Chinese Medicinal herbs most likely to help treat enuresis

Why might Praying Mantis Egg-Case (Sang Piao Shao) help with enuresis?

Because it is a key herb in Sang Piao Xiao San, a herbal formula indicated to treat the pattern 'Bladder Deficient and Cold' (a pattern with enuresis as a symptom)

Praying Mantis Egg-Cases is a Neutral herb that tastes Salty and Sweet. It targets the Kidney and the Liver.

Its main actions are: Tonifies Kidneys and strengthens Yang. Restrains Essence and decreases urination.

Read more about Praying Mantis Egg-Cases here

Why might Dragon Bone (Long Gu) help with enuresis?

Because it is a key herb in Sang Piao Xiao San, a herbal formula indicated to treat the pattern 'Bladder Deficient and Cold' (a pattern with enuresis as a symptom)

Dragon Bones is a Neutral herb that tastes Sweet. It targets the Heart, the Kidney and the Liver.

Its main actions are: Calms the spirit. Anchors ascendant Liver Yang. Stops leakage of Bodily Fluids.

Read more about Dragon Bones here

Why might Tortoise Plastron (Gui Ban) help with enuresis?

Because it is a key herb in Sang Piao Xiao San, a herbal formula indicated to treat the pattern 'Bladder Deficient and Cold' (a pattern with enuresis as a symptom)

Tortoise Plastrons is a Cool herb that tastes Salty and Sweet. It targets the Heart, the Kidney and the Liver.

Its main actions are: Nourishes the Yin and holds down the Yang. Strengthens the Kidneys and strengthens the bones. Cools the Blood, stops uterine bleeding. Nourishes the Heart. Promotes Healing.

Read more about Tortoise Plastrons here

Why might Ginseng (Ren Shen) help with enuresis?

Because it is a key herb in Sang Piao Xiao San, a herbal formula indicated to treat the pattern 'Bladder Deficient and Cold' (a pattern with enuresis as a symptom)

Ginseng is a Warm herb that tastes Bitter and Sweet. It targets the Heart, the Lung and the Spleen.

Its main actions are: Very strongly tonifies the Qi. Tonifies the Lungs and Spleen. Assists the body in the secretion of Fluids and stops thirst. Strengthens the Heart and calms the Shen (mind/spirit).

Read more about Ginseng here

Why might Host-Wood Poria (Fu Shen) help with enuresis?

Because it is a key herb in Sang Piao Xiao San, a herbal formula indicated to treat the pattern 'Bladder Deficient and Cold' (a pattern with enuresis as a symptom)

Host-Wood Poria is a Neutral herb that tastes Sweet. It targets the Spleen and the Heart.

Its main actions are: Calms the Mind (Shen) and promote urination.

Read more about Host-Wood Poria here