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Cupping is a therapy in which a jar is attached to the skin surface to cause local congestion through the negative (localized vacuum) pressure created by introducing heat in the form of an ignited material. In the ancient times in China, cupping mathod was called "horm method".

The animal horm was used to dispel pus. Along with continual development in clinical practice, the materials for making jars and the methods have been greatly improved. The range of indications has been expanded, since this method is simple and the therapeutic effect is good. This therapy was attracted with great attention and applied in a large scale by the broad masses and also used as an auxillary method of acupuncture and moxibustion.

The cupping method has the function of warming and promoting the free flow of qi and blood in the meridians, dispelling cold dampness, diminishing swellings and pains. In clinics, the cupping method is mainly used to treat Bi syndrome caused by wind dampness, such as pain of the low back, shoulders, and leg, gastrointestinal disorders such as stomachache, vomting, and diarrhoea, and the lung disease such as cough and asthma. When those meridians are opened, the internal energy is able to flow through the whole body.

The cupping method combined with bloodletting is suitable to treat acute sprains accompanied by blood stasis.

Cupping therapy is also used to release toxins, as well as increase lymphatic drainage.

Cupping Examples

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