Focal distention in the epigastrium

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Focal distention in the epigastrium 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 focal distention in the epigastrium 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 focal distention in the epigastrium is often associated with cough with pain in the chest and hypochondria, dry heaves and shortness of breath in the pattern “Phlegm-Fluids in the chest and hypochondrium”.

Once identified, patterns are treated using medicinal herbs, acupuncture, and other therapies. In the case of focal distention in the epigastrium we’ve identified that a herbal formula called Shi Zao Tang can help treat the patterns behind the symptom.

Phlegm-Fluids in the chest and hypochondrium, a "pattern of disharmony" that can cause focal distention in the epigastrium

In Chinese Medicine focal distention in the epigastrium is a symptom for the pattern "Phlegm-Fluids in the chest and hypochondrium". Below is a small explanation for it with links for more details.

Phlegm-Fluids in the chest and hypochondrium

Pulse type(s): Deep (Chen), Wiry (Xian)

Tongue coating: Thin white coating

In addition to focal distention in the epigastrium, other symptoms associated with Phlegm-Fluids in the chest and hypochondrium include cough with pain in the chest and hypochondria, dry heaves and shortness of breath.

Phlegm-Fluids in the chest and hypochondrium is often treated with Shi Zao Tang, a herbal formula made of 4 herbs (including Kansui Roots - Gan Sui - as a key herb). Shi Zao Tang belongs to the category of "formulas that drive out excess water", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Purges and drives out Phlegm-Fluids".

Read more about Phlegm-Fluids in the chest and hypochondrium here

A herbal formula that might help with focal distention in the epigastrium

Shi Zao Tang

Source date: 220 AD

Number of ingredients: 4 herbs

Key actions: Purges and drives out Phlegm-Fluids.

Why might Shi Zao Tang help with focal distention in the epigastrium?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern 'Phlegm-Fluids in the chest and hypochondrium' of which focal distention in the epigastrium is a symptom.

Other symptoms characteristic of Phlegm-Fluids In The Chest And Hypochondrium include cough with pain in the chest and hypochondria, dry heaves and shortness of breath.

Read more about Shi Zao Tang here

The three Chinese Medicinal herbs most likely to help treat focal distention in the epigastrium

Why might Peking Spurge Root (Jing Da Ji) help with focal distention in the epigastrium?

Because it is a key herb in Shi Zao Tang, a herbal formula indicated to treat the pattern 'Phlegm-Fluids in the chest and hypochondrium' (a pattern with focal distention in the epigastrium as a symptom)

Peking Spurge Roots is a Cold herb that tastes Bitter. It targets the Spleen, the Kidney and the Lung.

Its main actions are: Drains water downward and drives out Phlegm-Fluids. Reduces swellings and dispels lumps.

Read more about Peking Spurge Roots here

Why might Kansui Root (Gan Sui) help with focal distention in the epigastrium?

Because it is a key herb in Shi Zao Tang, a herbal formula indicated to treat the pattern 'Phlegm-Fluids in the chest and hypochondrium' (a pattern with focal distention in the epigastrium as a symptom)

Kansui Roots is a Cold herb that tastes Bitter. It targets the Spleen, the Kidney, the Large intestine and the Lung.

Its main actions are: Relieves water retention and congestion of Fluids. Cools swellings and reduces inflammation when applied topically. Strong purgative, driving water and Food Stagnation out though the stool.

Read more about Kansui Roots here

Why might Genkwa Flower (Yan Hua) help with focal distention in the epigastrium?

Because it is a key herb in Shi Zao Tang, a herbal formula indicated to treat the pattern 'Phlegm-Fluids in the chest and hypochondrium' (a pattern with focal distention in the epigastrium as a symptom)

Genkwa Flowers is a Warm herb that tastes Bitter and Pungent. It targets the Kidney, the Large intestine and the Lung.

Its main actions are: Relieves chronic congestion of Fluids in the chest and stops cough. Drains congested Fluids through the urine and the stool. Expels parasites.

Read more about Genkwa Flowers here

Other symptoms often associated with focal distention in the epigastrium

Cough with pain in the chest and hypochondria Dry heaves Shortness of breath Headaches Vertigo