Acupoint Application Therapy

Acupoint application therapy is an external therapy formed under the guidance of the holistic view of TCM. This method is based on the theory of meridians and collaterals of TCM and uses the acupoints on the body surface as stimulation points. Through the stimulation of applying medicine, the medicine can be absorbed through the skin to harmonize qi and blood, adjust the balance of yin and yang; and help to rehabilitate patients. TCM advocates that “those who are good at treating diseases should follow the rules of timing and establish the alternation of treatment as per seasons”, so it emphasizes the treatment of winter diseases in summer. According to the principle of “Nourishing yang in spring and summer” in “The Theory of Regulating The Spirit of the Four qi", combined with the medicinal moxibustion and drug therapy, the drug application is applied on the acupoints of the human body to stimulate the healthy qi and enhance the body’s ability of resist disease and cure diseases.

Treatment Mechanism

6.2.4.1.1 Medicine Acts on Pathogen

The disease evil of COVID-19 lies in the surface, the form of lung lies in the skin, and the disease evil first invades the surface. The medicine cannot only act directly on the skin striae, but also penetrate the tissue below the skin to eliminate or resist the external evil. The study shows that the permeability of acupoint skin is better than that of nonacupoint skin, and the permeation and absorption of TCM at acupoint is more obvious. Therefore, after the drug is applied to the corresponding acupoints, it can reach the disease of viscera meridian where qi is disordered, then the medicine’s meridional effect and functional effect can be brought into play.

6.2.4.1.2 Long-Term Acupoint Stimulation

Acupoint application t herapy is the embodiment of the physiological functions of acupoints themselves. The functions of acupoints are generally divided into distal treatment, proximal treatment, and special functions. In Su Wen Five zanggeneration, it is said, “people have 12 Acupuncture points... Acupuncture points are not only the place where yang stays on the muscle surface to resist external evils, but also the breakthrough point for external evils to easily invade.” This indicates that acupoints are the place that can maintain health and keep muscle surfaces resistant to exogenous evil. Moreover, it is the breakthrough point for exogenous evil to invade the human body. The acupoints are more sensitive to the warmth of the medicine, and the warming effect of the medicine can be maintained at the acupoints for a long time to further stimulate the acupoints. Li Zhen et al. believed that when medicine application stimulated acupoints, it opened up the pathway of “yang meridian of lung to yin meridian q/lung” and was mediated by acupoints. The function of dredging lung collaterals, qi and blood through medicine can result in a long-term health effect.

6.2.4.1.3 Regulate the Body as a Whole

The meridian system communicates with the tissues and organs of the human body and maintains the relative internal relations under the physiological state; however, when the body being damaged, the meridian acupoints can stimulate the self-defense of each tissue and organ. Exogenous evil located at fur and feather firstly, connected internally, and dispersed in the stomach and intestines, indicating that exogenous pathogens, through meridian points, construct the internal and external interaction of the human body. Similarly, acupoint application therapy is not only about the effect of drugs, but also the correction of the pathological state and the imbalance of the body. Zhang Yunwei et al. adjusted and improved the physique of COVID-19 patients to a stable stage with different Chinese medicine applications, corrected the imbalance of the body, reduced the susceptibility to disease, and further changed the pathological state of the body so that the balance of viscera, yin and yang, and qi and blood could be achieved.

6.2.4.1.4 Effects of Immune Mechanism

Chinese medicine has made great progress in disease prevention, health care, treatment, and so on, in recent years, especially in terms of the public recognizing the concepts of “healthy qi” and “yin and yang”. Healthy qi is similar to the immune function of Western medicine, and the imbalance olyin andyang is similar to the disorder of immune function in Western medicine. Chinese medicine has remarkable results in this respect. Acupoint application therapy, as an appropriate technology for the prevention and treatment of COVID-19 with TCM, can stimulate the immune function of the relevant system to the maximum extent, improve the body’s vital qi, and fundamentally cure or control the disease. Some scholars have proposed that the determination of the body’s immune function can be started from four aspects: cellular immunity, humoral immunity, mononuclear macrophage function, and natural killer cell (NK) cell activity. Other studies have shown that acupoint application therapy can further improve the level of pulmonary function of patients through cellular immunity and humoral immunity.

6.2.4.1.5 Effects of Inflammatory Mechanisms

COVID-19 is a disease composed of various factors, among which inflammation, always accompanied by disease progression, is the core factor. The lungs are the main diseased organs, but patients with increased inflammatory factors in the lungs can produce systemic inflammation and systemic effects. When external particles and bacteria enter the lungs, macrophages, neutrophils, lymphocytes, and other cells that have long existed in the lungs and trachea tissues will be activated. While playing a phagocytic role, they also release a variety of mediators.

Operation Method

  • 6.2.4.2.1 Selection of Acupoints
  • Medical observation period: Zhongwan, guanyuan, and zusanli.
  • Mild (syndrome of cold dampness and stagnation of the lung) and moderate (syndrome of cold dampness obstructing the lung): Guanyuan, hegu, zusanli, and taichong.
  • Convalescent period (deficiency of the lung and spleen): Dazhui, feishu, geshu, zusanli, and kongzui.
  • Convalescent period (deficiency of yin): Zusanli, danzhong, qihai, and yinlingquan.
  • 6.2.4.2.2 Composition and Production of Drugs

The application medicine mainly consists of ephedra, pineilia ternata, lumbri-cus, sinapis alba, perillaseed, and almond. The prescription has broad-spectrum antibacterial, anticancer, and osmotic effects. It is mostly used for cold phlegm stagnation, chest full hypochondriac pain, cough, asthma, and many other diseases. Ephedra and almond are good for cough and asthma, lumbri-cus is good for clearing heat and asthma, pineilia ternata is good for dryness and dampness. The combination of various drugs has the effect of warming the lung, dispersing cold, eliminating phlegm, and promoting qi, so the application of acupoint application therapy can effectively improve the symptoms of patients’ upper respiratory tracts.

Grind the medicine into a powder and mix it with honey to make a peanutsize pill.

  • 6.2.4.2.3 Operation Steps
  • 1) Take out the gasket.
  • 2) Tear off the adhesive.
  • 3) Fix it on the acupoints.
  • 4) Take a prepared medicine mud and press to fill the entire gasket.
  • 5) Take out the spacer moxibustion paste.
  • 6) Tear off the silicone oil paper.
  • 7) Align the spacer moxibustion paste with the gasket, and press it firmly.
  • 8) After pasting, have patients rest on their backs for 40 minutes.
  • 9) Remove it after 40 minutes.
 
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