IVF and Queer Couples: A Practitioner's Perspective

May 31, 2023

Rachel Blunk, LAc

Women looking at positive pregnancy test

Western studies have confirmed the efficacy of acupuncture for fertility outcomes. For over 20 years, Rachel Blunk, L.Ac., has worked with reproductive endocrinologists to help improve fertility outcomes for patients. In this article, Rachel discusses 2 cases where she used acupuncture and herbs for queer couples using IVF for successful implantation.

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Inclusion in Your TCM Practice

May 30, 2023

Katrina Hanson, L.Ac.

Inclusion Image

LGBTQI patients are more likely to have had a negative experience with a previous healthcare practitioner–anything from the practitioner using the wrong name to refusing to treat them unless they stop taking gender-affirming hormones. We can help repair our patients’ trust in their healthcare providers by building a more inclusive practice. Even those of us who are part of the LGBTQI community have a lot to learn about being inclusive practitioners.

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Profile of Transfeminine Care in the TCM Clinic

May 28, 2023

Avery Grace, L.Ac.

Trans Flag Image

Count the number of transgender people you are knowingly familiar with in your daily life. Now, count how many transgender patients you knowingly have in your practice. Bonus points if you got past the fingers on one hand! Many Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioners have little to no experience treating trans people, or coordinating gender-affirming care with other medical professionals. Moreover, there is a significant lack of research about transgender experience in general, and certainly in the realm of allopathic transgender medical care. Compared to allopathic medicine, the scarcity of information on transgender care in Chinese medicine is even greater.

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Abdominal Distension: (fu zhang 腹脹, pi man 痞滿)

May 2, 2023

William Maclean, M.Sc. Chin. Med.

Fu zhang refers to a sense of fullness, discomfort, blockage or obstruction across the either the upper or lower abdomen, or across the abdomen as a whole. Pi man is distension specifically in the epigastric area. As a general rule, abdominal distension is due to an obstruction to the correct movement of Spleen and Stomach qi. The obstruction itself may be due to the presence of some pathogen, internal or external or due to weakness or stagnation of qi.

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Treatment of Headache with Chinese Medicine

April 7, 2023

William Maclean, M.Sc. Chin. Med.

Headache (tou tong 头痛)is pain in the head. Almost everyone will experience a headache at one time or another. As an isolated event in response to some postural, physical or emotional state, a headache is part and parcel of life. When persistent or recurrent, or when they interfere with normal functioning, headaches suggests chronic imbalance that requires intervention.

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Master Tung's Beside Three Miles for Shao Yang type migraine, and other issues of the head & face

April 6, 2023

Susan Johnson, L.Ac.

Master Tung Beside Three Miles

Master Tung's Beside Three Miles & Lower Beside Three Miles are primary points for treating one-sided (Shao Yang) migraine headaches, spasm or pain, which often includes TMJ, the sternocleidomastoid muscle, GB20 Feng Chi and GB21 Jian Jing. Because the Gallbladder channel wraps around the ear, Beside Three Miles points are also excellent for otitis media and ear pain...

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Chinese Medicine Treatment of Rhinitis

March 6, 2023

William Maclean, M.Sc. Chin. Med.


Rhinitis, whether seasonal or perennial, is usually an allergic condition. In TCM terms we relate this concept to deficiency of wei qi. The wei (or protective) qi has its basis in Kidney yang and is distributed by the lungs to all the surfaces of the body.

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Stabilizing Shen and Hun: Insomnia

February 26, 2023

William Maclean, M.Sc. Chin. Med.

Insomnia (bù mèi 不寐, shī mián 失眠) is difficulty sleeping. Insomnia includes inability to sleep, difficulty falling asleep, frequent waking, restlessness at night, a disordered sleep cycle and dream disturbed sleep. In Chinese medicine, insomnia is primarily associated with instability or agitation of the anima, the shén and hún.

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Men's Health: Male Factor Infertility

February 14, 2023

William Maclean, M.Sc. Chin. Med.

The incidence of male factor infertility is believed to be increasing in the Western world. In Chinese, the word for sperm and essence is the same (jīng 精 ), that is, they have the same origin and are inextricably linked. According to Chinese medicine, the quality of sperm and its ability to fertilize an ovum is intimately linked to the health of the Kidneys and requires a number of factors to converge. 

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A Compassionate & Holistic Approach to Pregnancy Loss

February 13, 2023

Dr. Kim Peirano, DACM, L.Ac.

Photo of two hands intertwined in a compassionate style

Fertility and women’s health is a very popular specialty for many acupuncturists and herbalists. Success stories permeate medical journals, mom groups and amongst the general public, giving hope to those who wish to become pregnant and have had difficulty in the past. The truth of the matter, however, is that not every patient has this success story, not every patient gets pregnant, not every IVF round is a success and not every pregnancy will carry to term. Support in the process of shock, loss and grief can be profound within the spectrum of Chinese medicine.

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Infertility - Male and Female Case Study

February 9, 2023

Susan Johnson, L.Ac.

Photo of two hands making a heart shape on a pregnant stomach

This article is an excerpt from Master Tung’s Magic Points: The Clinician’s Best Friend, soon to be published by Susan Johnson and Eric Renaud. The topic of fertility treatment is more pertinent than ever, as young adults today are finding it increasingly difficult to conceive due to the effects of long-term stress, lack of sleep, EMF exposure, environmental toxins, and so many other reasons that create hormonal disruption and imbalance. This article discusses points and formulas used for infertility and discusses a case study of a man and woman and their successful pregnancy.

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Herbal Medicine during the Pandemic

January 30, 2023

Bill Schoenbart

Graphic of chinese herbs in piles

With great appreciation, Bill Schoenbart, associate chair of the Department of Herbology at Five Branches University, shares his clinical expertise of treating hundreds of Covid-19 patients over the last 3 years. Bill shares common patterns he has seen along with five case studies including how the TCM treatment plans evolved as the diagnosis changed partnered with recommended formulas to support those cases.

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Wind and Cold Damp Bi

January 26, 2023

Skye Sturgeon, DAOM, Quality Assurance Manager, Mayway

Wind and Cold Damp Bi

One of the most common reasons that patients seek treatment from licensed acupuncturists is for musculoskeletal aches and mild pain (Tòng 痛), both acute and chronic. There may also be decreased range of motion, inflammation, swelling, and numbness. Primarily, these issues are due to minor injury or dysfunction of joints and related soft tissues, including tendons and ligaments. In traditional Chinese medicine, this often is interpreted as Obstruction Syndrome (Bì zhèng 痺症).

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Cold Weather Kidney Tonics

January 4, 2023

Mark Frost, MSTCM, L.Ac.

Cold Weather Kidney Tonics Winter is upon us and the cold winds have begun to blow once again. This is an ideal time to strengthen and tonify the Kidneys in order to ensure the Yang Qi is warming the interior, channels and collaterals. The TCM functions of the Kidneys include storing the Essence, governing fluid metabolism in the lower burner and lower extremities, receiving the Qi from the Lungs, ruling the two lower orifices, regulating reproductive and sexual function, and housing the Life Gate (Ming Men – 命門) Fire. We review our top 3 cold weather kidney tonics and their use in Chinese medicine. Read More

Moxa Strengthens the Kidneys and Mingmen Fire

December 25, 2022

Susan Johnson, L.Ac.

Moxa is an excellent way to deeply warm the body, more important now, as we head into fall and winter. In fact, between the change of seasons, there is a two to four week period referred to as “Moxa Season.” During this interval, it is said that the “Life Gate is open.” 

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