Introduction to Filiform Fire Needling. Treating Low Back Pain with Heat
When: Wedensday, 6.4.2016 09:30-13:30
Field: Chinese Medicine - Practice
Introduction to Filiform Fire Needling
“Disease that is not successfully treated by acupuncture may be treated by jiu-heat application methods” Yellow Emperor’s Inner Classic (Chapter 73 of the Basic Questions) 《黄帝内经》《灵枢·官能》曰：”针所不为，灸之所宜”.
Filiform fire needling is a therapeutic technique where warm needles are used. Even though this technique has its own theories and way of thinking, it can be used from any acupuncture practitioner even without knowing these theories, in order to strengthen the therapeutic outcome from the points that are used. Therefore practitioners of Tung’s acupuncture for example can use this technique for achieving even greater results.
Even though filiform fire needling derives from the classics, the application of filiform fire needling often can be based on something broader. For example in case of tinnitus, even though it may be caused due to imbalance of Liver or Kidney, the treatment with filiform fire needling will be the same, by choosing points on the area of sternocleidomastoid muscle. The relief from tinnitus by filiform fire needling will be immediate, since the tension of the tympanic membrane that was originally causing tinnitus is decreased. Of course at the same time other points can be used to treat the root of the problem.
The purpose of filiform fire needling is the transmission of heat into the body at specific points, which could be the known acupuncture points or other points with special characteristics.
Treatment with filiform fire needling is actually what we mistakenly call “moxibustion” therapy. The main difference between moxibustion and filiform fire needling is that during moxibustion heat is transferred on the skin and then to the other tissues, while during filiform fire needling heat is transferred directly into the tissues of the body thus producing mediate positive results.
So filiform fire needling is a way of treating difficult cases with immediate positive results due to the function of heat.
Internal heat application method (nèi jiǔ fǎ, 内灸法) is actually fire needling (huǒ zhēn, 火针). Fire needling has a long history in China. The first recordings can be found in the Yellow Emperor’s Inner Classic. For example the Ling Shu’s chapter “About the Needles” (líng shū guān zhēn, 灵枢官针) mentions that the ninth needle, which is described as the “big needle”, is the fire needle (jiǔ yuē cuì cì, 九曰焠刺) and the practitioner of fire needling can use this needle to treat bi syndrome (cuì cì zhě, cì fán zhēn zé qǔ bì yě, 焠刺者，刺燔针则取痹也).
In another part of Su Wen’s chapter “Regulating the Channels” (素问: 调经论) mentions that when the pathology is in the level of bone, which is the deepest and most chronic level, then the use of fire needle or heated herbs is recommended (bìng zài gǔ, cuì zhēn yào yùn, 病在骨焠针药熨).
Treating Low Back Pain with Heat
“When herbs and acupuncture are not effective then jiu-heat application methods must be used” Introduction to Medicine (Chapter: acupuncture and heat application methods) 《医学入门·针灸》 “药之不及，针之不到，必须灸之”
Heat application methods or jiufa can be performed by the use of any heat producing material. For example direct application of fire on the body for heating the body tissues is a special way of treatment that is called huojiu (huǒ jiǔ, 火灸) which literally means fire thermal therapy.
Low back pain can be successfully treated within few minutes by filiform fire needling. In cases of cold situated on the low back huojiu is also an impressive treatment that expels the cold, dredge the channels and moves blood.
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