Lack of sweating according to Chinese Medicine

absence of sweating redirects here

Lack of sweating 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 lack of sweating 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 lack of sweating is often associated with coughing, shortness of breath and oedema in the pattern “/tcm-education-center/patterns/phlegm-fluids”. As you will see below, we have in record four patterns that can cause lack of sweating.

Once identified, patterns are treated using medicinal herbs, acupuncture, and other therapies. In the case of lack of sweating 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 lack of sweating.

The four "patterns of disharmony" that can cause lack of sweating

In Chinese Medicine lack of sweating is a symptom for 4 patterns that we have on record. Below is a small explanation for each of them with links for more details.

Crow-Dipper Rhizomes (Ban Xia) is the king ingredient for Er Chen Tang, a formula used for /tcm-education-center/patterns/phlegm-fluids

Phlegm-Fluids

Pulse type(s): Wiry (Xian)

In addition to lack of sweating, other symptoms associated with /tcm-education-center/patterns/phlegm-fluids include coughing, shortness of breath and oedema.

/tcm-education-center/patterns/phlegm-fluids is often treated with Er Chen Tang, a herbal formula made of 5 herbs (including Crow-Dipper Rhizomes - Ban Xia - as a key herb). Er Chen Tang belongs to the category of "formulas that dry dampness and transform phlegm", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Dries Damp and dispels Phlegm".

Read more about Phlegm-Fluids here

Ephedra (Ma Huang) is the king ingredient for Ma Huang Tang, a formula used for /tcm-education-center/patterns/greater-yang-attack-of-cold

Greater Yang Attack of Cold

Pulse type(s): Tight (Jin), Floating (Fu)

In addition to lack of sweating, other symptoms associated with /tcm-education-center/patterns/greater-yang-attack-of-cold include aversion to cold, runny nose and sneezing.

/tcm-education-center/patterns/greater-yang-attack-of-cold is often treated with Ma Huang Tang, a herbal formula made of 4 herbs (including Ephedra - Ma Huang - as a key herb). Ma Huang Tang belongs to the category of "formulas that clear wind-cold", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Releases exterior cold".

Read more about Greater Yang Attack of Cold here

Ephedra (Ma Huang) is the king ingredient for Da Qing Long Tang, a formula used for /tcm-education-center/patterns/phlegm-fluids-in-the-limbs

Phlegm-Fluids in the limbs

Pulse type(s): Tight (Jin), Wiry (Xian)

Tongue coating: Sticky coating, Thick white coating

Tongue shape: Swollen

This is when Body Fluids stagnate in the four limbs instead of flowing in the body and getting released as sweat.

In addition to lack of sweating, other symptoms associated with /tcm-education-center/patterns/phlegm-fluids-in-the-limbs include generalized body pain, irritability and coughing of copious thin and white sputum.

/tcm-education-center/patterns/phlegm-fluids-in-the-limbs is often treated with Da Qing Long Tang, a herbal formula made of 7 herbs (including Ephedra - Ma Huang - as a key herb). Da Qing Long Tang belongs to the category of "formulas that clear wind-cold", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Promotes sweating".

Read more about Phlegm-Fluids in the limbs here

Apricot Seeds (Xing Ren) is the king ingredient for Xing Su San, a formula used for /tcm-education-center/patterns/dry-cold

Dry-Cold

Pulse type(s): Tight (Jin), Floating (Fu)

In addition to lack of sweating, other symptoms associated with /tcm-education-center/patterns/dry-cold include aversion to cold, fever and headaches.

/tcm-education-center/patterns/dry-cold is often treated with Xing Su San, a herbal formula made of 11 herbs (including Apricot Seeds - Xing Ren - as a key herb). Xing Su San belongs to the category of "formulas that disperse dryness and moisten", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Clears Dry-Cold".

Read more about Dry-Cold here

Five herbal formulas that might help with lack of sweating

Er Chen Tang

Source date: 1148 AD

Number of ingredients: 5 herbs

Key actions: Dries Damp and dispels Phlegm. Regulates Qi and harmonizes the Middle Burner (Stomach and Spleen).

Why might Er Chen Tang help with lack of sweating?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern '/tcm-education-center/patterns/phlegm-fluids' of which no sweat is a symptom.

Read more about Er Chen Tang here

Ma Huang Tang

Source date: 220 AD

Number of ingredients: 4 herbs

Key actions: Releases exterior cold. Treats wheezing.

Why might Ma Huang Tang help with lack of sweating?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern '/tcm-education-center/patterns/greater-yang-attack-of-cold' of which absence of sweating is a symptom.

Read more about Ma Huang Tang here

Xiao Qing Long Tang

Source date: 220 AD

Number of ingredients: 8 herbs

Key actions: Releases the Exterior. Transforms Phlegm-Fluids. Warms the Lungs. Directs Rebellious Qi downward.

Why might Xiao Qing Long Tang help with lack of sweating?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern '/tcm-education-center/patterns/phlegm-fluids-in-the-limbs' of which no sweat is a symptom.

Read more about Xiao Qing Long Tang here

Da Qing Long Tang

Source date: 220 AD

Number of ingredients: 7 herbs

Key actions: Promotes sweating. Releases the Exterior. Clears Interior Heat.

Why might Da Qing Long Tang help with lack of sweating?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern '/tcm-education-center/patterns/phlegm-fluids-in-the-limbs' of which no sweat is a symptom.

Read more about Da Qing Long Tang here

Xing Su San

Source date: 1798 AD

Number of ingredients: 11 herbs

Key actions: Clears Dry-Cold. Disseminates the Lung Qi and relieves cough. Transforms thin mucus.

Why might Xing Su San help with lack of sweating?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern '/tcm-education-center/patterns/dry-cold' of which no sweat is a symptom.

Read more about Xing Su San here

Acupuncture points used for lack of sweating

The five Chinese Medicinal herbs most likely to help treat lack of sweating

Why might Liquorice (Gan Cao) help with lack of sweating?

Because Liquorice is an ingredient in several formulas indicated to treat lack of sweating as a symptom, like Ma Huang Tang or Er Chen Tang for instance.

Liquorice is a Neutral herb that tastes Sweet. It targets the Heart, the Lung, the Spleen and the Stomach.

Its main actions are: Tonifies the Basal Qi and nourishes the Spleen Qi. Clears Heat and dispels toxicity. Moistens the Lungsexpel phlegm and stop coughing. Relieves spasms and alleviates pain. Harmonizes and moderates the effects of other herbs.

Read more about Liquorice here

Why might Cinnamon Twig (Gui Zhi) help with lack of sweating?

Because Cinnamon Twig is an ingredient in several formulas indicated to treat lack of sweating as a symptom, like Gui Zhi Tang or Ma Huang Tang for instance.

Cinnamon Twigs is a Warm herb that tastes Pungent and Sweet. It targets the Heart, the Lung and the Spleen.

Its main actions are: Adjusts the nutritive Ying and defensive Wei Qi. Relieves the Exterior through sweating. Warms and disperses Cold. Removes obstruction of Yang. Promotes the circulation of Yang Qi in the chest. Regulates and moves blood.

Read more about Cinnamon Twigs here

Why might Poria-Cocos Mushroom (Fu Ling) help with lack of sweating?

Because Poria-Cocos Mushroom is an ingredient in several formulas indicated to treat lack of sweating as a symptom, like Ling Gui Zhu Gan Tang or Wu Ling San for instance.

Poria-Cocos Mushrooms is a Neutral herb that tastes Sweet. It targets the Heart, the Kidney, the Lung and the Spleen.

Its main actions are: Encourages urination and drains Dampness. Tonic to the Spleen/Stomach. Assists the Heart and calms the Spirit.

Read more about Poria-Cocos Mushrooms here

Why might Fresh Ginger (Sheng Jiang) help with lack of sweating?

Because Fresh Ginger is an ingredient in several formulas indicated to treat lack of sweating as a symptom, like Gui Zhi Tang or Da Qing Long Tang for instance.

Fresh Ginger is a Warm herb that tastes Pungent. It targets the Lung, the Spleen and the Stomach.

Its main actions are: Relieves the Exterior and disperses Cold. Warms and circulates Qi in the Middle Burner. Calms a restless fetus and treats morning sickness. Treats seafood poisoning.

Read more about Fresh Ginger here

Why might Jujube Date (Da Zao) help with lack of sweating?

Because Jujube Date is an ingredient in several formulas indicated to treat lack of sweating as a symptom, like Gui Zhi Tang or Da Qing Long Tang for instance.

Jujube Dates is a Warm herb that tastes Sweet. It targets the Spleen and the Stomach.

Its main actions are: Tonifies the Spleen and Stomach Qi. Tonifies the Blood. Calms the Shen (spirit). Moderates the actions of other herbs in formula.

Read more about Jujube Dates here