Tongue and pulse diagnostics are central elements of the examination methods in TCM.
TCM proceeds from the assumption that the outer appearance and behavior of the patient can provide clues as to internal or organic processes.
Noteworthy facts about tongue diagnostics
In TCM, the appearance of the tongue is interpreted along the lines of different factors in order to draw conclusions about the energy and organ status.
The tongue is considered a carrier of reflex zones and a source for inner organic processes. Many meridians pass the tongue and thereby influence its outer appearance. That appearance also depends on circulation, however. Qi generally has to be strong for fluids and blood to be transported.
During an expert examination, the surface is scanned for symptoms like covering, color, spots, and cracks, as well as for its size and form, stretchiness and flexibility. From there, conclusions about the body’s health are drawn.
Advantages and disadvantages of tongue diagnostics
- it provides clues about chronic diseases.
- acute diseases are quickly visible on the tongue.
- patients are able to check for themselves at home and follow the course of the therapy.
- tongue diagnostics are in some cases not precise enough for a complex diagnose and have to be combined with other measures.
- the properties of the tongue’s covering and color could be altered by the intake of medication.
Diagnosing the pulse in TCM is a much more complex form of diagnose as it is in academic medicine.
Here, the pulse is viewed not only as a symptom but also as an indicator for the state of the entire organism.
28 different pulse types are differentiated here, which can be measured on both wrists.
By measuring and interpreting the pulse qualities, the doctor can judge the energetic state of the body.
This way, information about the function of specific organs like the heart, kidneys, lungs, stomach, or intestines, as well as the condition of the blood circulation, can be properly assessed.
The diagnose allows for conclusions about energy-related disorders in the body, diseases, or function disorders.