Kidney stones according to Chinese Medicine

Home > Symptoms list > Kidney stones

Kidney stones 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 kidney stones 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 kidney stones is often associated with gallstones and epigastric pain in the pattern “Phlegm in Kidneys or Gallbladder”.

Once identified, patterns are treated using medicinal herbs, acupuncture, and other therapies. In the case of kidney stones we’ve identified that a herbal formula called Da Huang Fu Zi Tang can help treat the patterns behind the symptom.

Phlegm in Kidneys or Gallbladder, a "pattern of disharmony" that can cause kidney stones

In Chinese Medicine kidney stones is a symptom for the pattern "Phlegm in Kidneys or Gallbladder". Below is a small explanation for it with links for more details.

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

Phlegm in Kidneys or Gallbladder

Pulse type(s): Slippery (Hua), Wiry (Xian)

Tongue coating: Sticky coating, Thick coating

Tongue shape: Swollen

According to Chinese medicine, gallstones or kidney stones are a form of Phlegm.

In addition to kidney stones, other symptoms associated with Phlegm in Kidneys or Gallbladder include gallstones and epigastric pain.

Phlegm in Kidneys or Gallbladder is often treated with Da Huang Fu Zi Tang, a herbal formula made of 3 herbs (including Prepared Aconite - Zhi Fu Zi - as a key herb). Da Huang Fu Zi Tang belongs to the category of "formulas that warm and purge", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Warms the Interior".

Read more about Phlegm in Kidneys or Gallbladder here

A herbal formula that might help with kidney stones

Da Huang Fu Zi Tang

Source date: 220 AD

Number of ingredients: 3 herbs

Key actions: Warms the Interior. Disperses Cold. Unblocks the bowels. Alleviates pain.

Why might Da Huang Fu Zi Tang help with kidney stones?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern 'Phlegm in Kidneys or Gallbladder' of which kidney stones is a symptom.

Other symptoms characteristic of Phlegm In Kidneys Or Gallbladder include gallstones and epigastric pain.

Read more about Da Huang Fu Zi Tang here

Prepared aconite might help with kidney stones

Why might Prepared Aconite (Zhi Fu Zi) help with kidney stones?

Because it is a key herb in Da Huang Fu Zi Tang, a herbal formula indicated to treat the pattern 'Phlegm in Kidneys or Gallbladder' (a pattern with kidney stones as a symptom)

Prepared Aconite is a Hot herb that tastes Pungent and Sweet. It targets the Spleen, the Heart and the Kidney.

Its main actions are: Raises the collapse of Yang. Warms the meridians and relieves pain caused by Cold. Reduces Damp caused by Deficiency in Yang.

Read more about Prepared Aconite here