The information provided here is not a replacement for a doctor. You shouldn't use it for the purpose of self-diagnosing or self-medicating but rather so you can have a more informed discussion with a professional TCM practitioner.
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Urinary retention 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 urinary retention 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 urinary retention is often associated with low-grade fever, night sweats and five palm heat in the pattern “Collapse of Yin”. As you will see below, we have in record two patterns that can cause urinary retention.
Once identified, patterns are treated using medicinal herbs, acupuncture, and other therapies. In the case of urinary retention we’ve identified two 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 urinary retention.
In Chinese Medicine urinary retention 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.
Pulse type(s): Rapid (Shu), Fine (Xi)
Collapse of Yin is often treated with Da Bu Yin Wan, a herbal formula made of 4 herbs (including Prepared Rehmannia - Shu Di huang - as a key herb). Da Bu Yin Wan belongs to the category of "formulas that nourish yin and tonify", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Enriches the Yin".
Pulse type(s): Rapid (Shu), Floating (Fu)
Greater Yang Accumulation of Water is often treated with Wu Ling San, a herbal formula made of 5 herbs (including Water Plantain - Ze Xie - as a key herb). Wu Ling San belongs to the category of "formulas that promote urination and leach out dampness", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Promotes urination,".
Source date: 1481 AD
Number of ingredients: 4 herbs
Key actions: Enriches the Yin. Directs fire downward.
Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern 'Collapse of Yin' of which urinary retention is a symptom.
Source date: 220 AD
Number of ingredients: 5 herbs
Key actions: Promotes urination,. Warms the Yang. Strengthens the Spleen. Promotes Qi transformation function. Drains Dampness. Clears edema.
Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern 'Greater Yang Accumulation of Water' of which urinary retention is a symptom.
Its main actions are: Tonifies the Blood. Tonifies the Yin of the Kidneys.
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.
Its main actions are: Expels Damp-Heat in the Lower Burner. Clears Kidney Yin Deficient Heat. Applied externally or toxic Fire, especially associated with Dampness.
Its main actions are: Clears Heat and Fire from the Qi level. Clears Heat and Fire from the Lung and Stomach. Clears Heat and tonifies the Yin.
Its main actions are: Causes urination and removes Damp-Heat