Meningitis according to Chinese Medicine

tubercular meningitis redirects here

Meningitis 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 meningitis 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 meningitis is often associated with headaches and stifling sensation in the chest in the pattern “/tcm-education-center/patterns/wind-phlegm”.

Once identified, patterns are treated using medicinal herbs, acupuncture, and other therapies. In the case of meningitis we’ve identified that a herbal formula called Ban Xia Bai Zhu Tian Ma Tang can help treat the patterns behind the symptom.

Wind-Phlegm, a "pattern of disharmony" that can cause meningitis

In Chinese Medicine meningitis is a symptom for the pattern "Wind-Phlegm". Below is a small explanation for it with links for more details.

Crow-Dipper Rhizomes (Ban Xia) is the king ingredient for Ban Xia Bai Zhu Tian Ma Tang, a formula used for /tcm-education-center/patterns/wind-phlegm

Wind-Phlegm

Pulse type(s): Wiry (Xian)

Tongue coating: Sticky coating

Tongue shape: Deviated, Swollen

Wind-Phlegm is when Phlegm invades the Channels and sensory orifices, leading to such symptoms as dizziness, vertigo, or headache.

In addition to meningitis, other symptoms associated with /tcm-education-center/patterns/wind-phlegm include headaches and stifling sensation in the chest.

/tcm-education-center/patterns/wind-phlegm is often treated with Ban Xia Bai Zhu Tian Ma Tang, a herbal formula made of 8 herbs (including Crow-Dipper Rhizomes - Ban Xia - as a key herb). Ban Xia Bai Zhu Tian Ma Tang belongs to the category of "formulas that transform phlegm and extinguish wind", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Dries and dissolves Phlegm".

Read more about Wind-Phlegm here

A herbal formula that might help with meningitis

Ban Xia Bai Zhu Tian Ma Tang

Source date: 1732 AD

Number of ingredients: 8 herbs

Key actions: Dries and dissolves Phlegm. Strengthens the Spleen. Smoothes the Liver and calms Liver Wind (antispasmodic).

Why might Ban Xia Bai Zhu Tian Ma Tang help with meningitis?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern '/tcm-education-center/patterns/wind-phlegm' of which tubercular meningitis is a symptom.

Read more about Ban Xia Bai Zhu Tian Ma Tang here

The five Chinese Medicinal herbs most likely to help treat meningitis

Why might Atractylodes Rhizome (Bai Zhu) help with meningitis?

Because it is a key herb in Ban Xia Bai Zhu Tian Ma Tang, a herbal formula indicated to treat the pattern 'Wind-Phlegm' (a pattern with meningitis as a symptom)

Atractylodes Rhizomes is a Warm herb that tastes Bitter and Sweet. It targets the Spleen and the Stomach.

Its main actions are: Tonifies the Spleen Qi. Fortifies the Spleen Yang and dispels Damp through urination. Tonifies Qi and stops sweating. Calms restless fetus when due to Deficiency of Spleen Qi.

Read more about Atractylodes Rhizomes here

Why might Gastrodia Rhizome (Tian Ma) help with meningitis?

Because it is a key herb in Ban Xia Bai Zhu Tian Ma Tang, a herbal formula indicated to treat the pattern 'Wind-Phlegm' (a pattern with meningitis as a symptom)

Gastrodia Rhizomes is a Neutral herb that tastes Sweet. It targets the Liver.

Its main actions are: Calms Liver Wind. Sedates Liver Yang and relieves convulsions. Relieves Wind and stops pain.

Read more about Gastrodia Rhizomes here

Why might Poria-Cocos Mushroom (Fu Ling) help with meningitis?

Because it is a key herb in Ban Xia Bai Zhu Tian Ma Tang, a herbal formula indicated to treat the pattern 'Wind-Phlegm' (a pattern with meningitis as a symptom)

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 Tangerine Peel (Chen Pi) help with meningitis?

Because it is a key herb in Ban Xia Bai Zhu Tian Ma Tang, a herbal formula indicated to treat the pattern 'Wind-Phlegm' (a pattern with meningitis as a symptom)

Tangerine Peel is a Warm herb that tastes Bitter and Pungent. It targets the Lung and the Spleen.

Its main actions are: Warms the Spleen and regulates the Middle Burner Qi. Dries Dampness and disperses Phlegm from the Lungs and Middle Burner. Reduces the potential for Stagnation caused by tonifying herbs.

Read more about Tangerine Peel here

Why might Crow-Dipper Rhizome (Ban Xia) help with meningitis?

Because it is a key herb in Ban Xia Bai Zhu Tian Ma Tang, a herbal formula indicated to treat the pattern 'Wind-Phlegm' (a pattern with meningitis as a symptom)

Crow-Dipper Rhizomes is a Warm herb that tastes Pungent. It targets the Lung, the Spleen and the Stomach.

Its main actions are: Drains Dampness and reduces Phlegm. Reverses the flow of Rebellious Qi. Reduces hardenings and relieves distention.

Read more about Crow-Dipper Rhizomes here