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 Acupuncture Union Square • Woman's Health

Woman's Health

Gynecology in TOM (traditional oriental medicine) has been developed and utilized over several thousand years time span, as an ancient healing system that has proven to be effective and safe with no adverse side effects. With a broad range of gynecologic issues, TOM treats particular disorders as well as emphasizes the balance of body and mind.

Traditional Oriental Medicine views your body as a continuation of the natural world that surrounds it. Like all nature, your body needs gentle warmth, moisture, nourishment and cultivation for flourishing. And like a natural world, your body is influenced by environmental factors- sunshine, wind, rain, storm, snow- conditions reflected both in your physical health and your emotional state.

Our practitioners assess the information on individual basis for finding the root cause of gynecologic disorders and help to restore balance and reproductive wellness.

Within TOM, gynecological practice is defined in general categories, including: Menstrual irregularities, disorders at the time of menstruation, disorders during pregnancy, disorders after childbirth, infertility, and menopausal syndrome, among others.

Menstrual irregularities

Sometimes women have problems in their menstrual cycle called menstrual irregularities or menstrual problems. They may not get periods, get periods too frequently, and have unpredictable menstrual bleeding. Before determination of menstrual irregularities, practitioners consider of pregnant first, and will ask the pattern of bleeding, and the duration of menstruation.

The main principle of treatment is to regulate the periods. In a broad sense, this involves regulating Yin and Yang and Qi and blood.

Menstrual irregularities

Disorders at the time of menstruation

Dysmenorrhea is the western medical term for pain due to uterine contraction and menstrual cramp. Painful menses usually begins with ovulatory menstrual periods and occurs before and during menses. Dysmenorrhea typically does not occur in anovulatory cycles. Prostaglandines, hormone-like substance, are potent stimulators of uterine contraction and endometrial prostaglandins are secreted during luteal phase. If ovulation does not occur, there is no luteal phase.

In TOM, liver, chong(penetrating) channel and ren(directing) channel are responsible for menstruation. For a normal period, blood must be abundant and move properly then blood depends on the free flow of liver qi. If liver qi is not moving smoothly, liver qi and blood can be stagnated. Stagnation of qi and blood, which may arise by itself or be casued by cold in the uterus, is most important factor in painful menstruation.

Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS)

Premenstrual syndrome is the most popular menstrual disorders in woman's reproductive years. Symptoms include bloating or weight gain, breast tenderness, anxiety, irritability, food cravings or changes in appetite, poor concentration, sleep disturbances, depressive symptoms etc. In western medicinal view, it can be ruled out the imbalance between estrogen and progesterone, while emotional strain is the most important etiology factor for premenstrual syndrome in traditional oriental medicine. Anger, frustration, and resentment may cause stagnation of Liver qi which is a major cause of PMS.

Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS)


Diseases during pregnancy

Morning sickness is nausea and vomiting that happens during early pregnancy (generally between 8 and 12 weeks), but it can occur at any time. The cause of morning sickness is unknown, but factors that may be involved include hormones called human chorionic gonadotropin and estrogen. In Chinese medicine, morning sickness is often seen as an imbalance between the liver and the stomach/spleen or from the accumulation of too much heat in the stomach in general.

Morning Sickness TCM Etiology

Diseases during pregnancy

Postpartum Diseases

Postpartum depression occurs in women after they have carried a child, usually in the first few months, and may last up to several months or even a year.Symptoms include sadness, fatigue, changes in sleeping and eating patterns, reduced libido, crying episodes, anxiety, and irritability. It is sometimes assumed that postpartum depression is caused by a lack of vitamins, but studies tend to show that more likely causes are the significant changes in a woman's hormones during pregnancy.

Postpartum depression is easily explained in TCM. The exertion and loss of blood occuring at childbirth induce a state of blood deficiency since the Hearth houses the mind and governs blood.  If heart blood becomes deficient, the mind has no residence and it becomes depressed and anxious. And other conditions can be explained with Yin deficiency with empty heat and blood stagnation.

Postpartum bodyache refers to pain, ache, soreness, numbness or a feeling of heaviness in the joints, back or knees after childbirth.

Persistent lochial discharge refers to a lochial discharge that goes on for more than 3 weeks after childbirth, or with the color being abnormal.

Etiology and pathology of postpartum disorders in TCM

Etiology and pathology of postpartum disorders in TCM


Menopause is the normal, gradual physiological transition in a women's life from a reproductive to a non reproductive state. When a woman has had no menstrual periods for 12 months, and has no other medical reason for her periods to stop, she is in menopause. Many women& go through menopause without any discomforts, while others experience various uncomfortable symptoms and signs during this phase of life. In TCM, menopausal symptoms are due to a decline of Kidney Jing(essence) which can take the form of Kidney Yin, Kidney Yang or a combined Kidney Yin and Kidney Yang deficiency. Although a deficiency of the Kidney Jing(essence) is always at the root of menopausal problems (with the exception of premature menopausal problems from phlegm), other excess patterns often accompany it, Dampness, Stagnation of Qi or Stasis of Blood.

Menopausal symptoms often include:

  • hot flushes
  • night sweats
  • headaches
  • fatigue
  • lethargy
  • irritability
  • vaginal dryness
  • anxiety
  • nervousness
  • depression
  • insomnia
  • inability to concentrate

General Treatment Principle in TCM


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