The Importance of Pulse Diagnosis
The 12 pulses, 6 on each wrist, tell the story of your health to an acupuncturist.
The pulses are a guide to where imbalances in the body lie which determines what acupuncture points are needed to balance the chi energy and restore health.
A licensed acupuncturist will always read your pulses at each treatment. They may also read the tongue and other additional forms of diagnosing any imbalances in the chi energy. Reading the pulses can help identify the cause of your health issues and can also provide valuable feedback as to the possible causes of those health issues.
Most chiropractors, physical therapists, and other health professionals not fully trained in acupuncture read the wrist pulses prior to placing needles because of their very limited training in acupuncture, often less than 100 hours. They cannot know or treat the “cause” of your illness in most cases without reading the pulses.
Please see only a licensed acupuncturist for acupuncture – always!
There are other types of healthcare providers who perform acupuncture that do not do a pulse or tongue diagnosis because it was not a part of the acupuncture training they received. A fully-trained acupuncturist who received their training from an NCCAOM or ACAOM accredited school will always read your pulses to see where what the state of the chi energy is in your body. While acupuncture is well-known and used for alleviating pain, if you do not know why the pain is there or the cause of the pain and use acupuncture points to relieve the pain without addressing the cause, a more serious underlying disease process gets left untreated and could get worse.
Acupuncture works by balancing the flow of chi energy in the body. The chi energy flows through twelve meridians or pathways in our body. The meridians correspond to ten organs and two functions in the body: The liver, gallbladder, lungs, colon, stomach, spleen, heart, small intestines, bladder, kidneys, pericardium and the three-heater (which regulates body temperature). Imbalances in the chi are diagnosed by palpation of the twelve pulses felt in the wrists, six on each wrist, left and right side. An acupuncturist can fell the relative strength of the chi energy in each of the organs in the body by feeling the pulse and also see if there are any blocks in the flow of chi energy throughout the body and where the blocks are.
The 12 Acupuncture Pulses
The twelve pulses on the wrists correspond to 12 acupuncture meridians in the body. The pulse reading gives information about how the chi energy is flowing throughout the body.