Stop the Bleeding, Clarify the Source, and Restore Qi and Blood
One day, a young lady came into our out-patient clinic. She was referred to me by another doctor. Her thin and pale face was full of sorrow and energyless. She told me in a weak voice that her menstruation had not stopped for six months in a row, sometimes the flow is heavy like a flood, other times just little spots.
The ultrasound examination one week before did not reveal any abnormalities. She was in pain and depressed because of the non-stop long-term bleeding, accompanied by dizziness, low energy, an irregular heartbeat, shortness of breath, fatigue, and weakness. Her blood count showed anemia and low iron levels.
After listening to the patient's complaints, I checked her pulse and tongue, which are two primary TCM diagnostic techniques. Her pulse was thin and weak, and her tongue was pale and big with tooth marks and a thin coating. My diagnosis was: irregular menstrual bleeding due to Qi deficiency.
If a woman is not menstruating but with continuous heavy bleeding (Beng) or spotting (Lou), it is called "Beng Lou”. “Beng” can turn into “Lou” when bleeding occurs for a long time and the Qi and Blood are worn; "Lou" can also turn into "Beng" when blood drips for long time and the illness aggravates.
The main pathogenesis of this sickness is the inability to control menstrual bleeding due to deficiency of kidney energy and the deficiency of general Qi, blood heat and stasis. The symptoms of this patient falls into Qi deficiency type.
The treatment principle for this sickness is "treat the symptoms if it is urgent (acute), treat the root if it is under control", and the treatment approach is "stop the bleeding, clarify the source and restore Qi and blood".
“Stop the bleeding” is crucial when the bleeding is heavy. However, it won’t be enough to use anti-bleeding herbs only to stop the bleeding. It is indicated to search for the major cause of the bleeding with western diagnosis tools as well.
In TCM, “Clarifying the source” means to identify the reason for the disease. “Beng Lou” can mostly be improved by tonifying the kidney Qi, clearing the heat and eliminating the stasis.
“Restore the Qi and blood” means strengthening the spleen and stomach to produce enough Qi and blood, so as to get ready for the next menstruation, meanwhile tonifying the Kidney to rebuild the menstrual cycle.
I followed the three methods listed above to treat this patient. When her menstruation was heavy, I first strengthened her spleen and Qi, and then regulated her blood and stopped her bleeding, so that her period was shortened to 7-8 days. When her bleeding stopped, I started to tonify her kidneys and regulate the period flow, so as to rebuild her menstrual cycle, whilst also helping with iron supplements.
Two months later, her menstrual cycle became regular and her menstrual flow was significantly reduced. Three months later, her blood routine test and iron level were also normal. Four months later when I saw her again, all her symptoms were reduced, her face complexion appeared healthy, her energy was restored, and she was in a happy mood.
“Beng Lou” is a common disease in gynecology, often due to the alternation of bleeding and dripping. The causes and effects of the disease are interrelated, resulting in a lingering problem that is difficult to cure. TCM offers the opportunity to restore balance and help the body return to having a proper menstrual cycle. At the same time, it is also necessary to use medical examination methods to exclude uterine tumors, polyps, inflammation, bleeding after IUD and other organic lesions.
Senior doctor of TCM, Gynecology and Fertility specialist
Body & Soul’s gynecologist Liu Ai Wu has a strong background in gynecology as well as in internal medicine, since many gynecological problems originate in areas covered by internal medicine. She has also been trained comprehensively in Western medicine and diagnostics. Our team offers the ideal combination of natural, Eastern approaches and Western science to address your gynecological and overall health. Dr. Liu offers TCM evaluation and treatments in the Downtown (Xintiandi) clinic. Click here to make an appointment with her.