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Chinese/Japanese Pulse Image chart: Hidden Pulse (fumai)

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Credit: Chinese/Japanese Pulse Image chart: Hidden Pulse (fumai). Wellcome Collection. Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)

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Illustration of Hidden Pulse (fumai) from Renyuan maiying guizhi tushuo (Pictorial Handbook of Pulse Images Based on the Person). This is a specialist text on pulse diagnosis attributed to the third-century master Shuhe, edited and revised by Shen Jifen in the Ming period (1368-1644). It discusses various pulse images and the medical conditions to which they relate, and contains 48 pulse image diagrams. This undated edition was engraved and published in Japan.

The text states: The pulse image of Hidden Pulse is as follows. When palpated lightly (ju, lit. raised), it is completely absent, and when pressed it is imperceptible. But when pressed firmly down to the bone, it can be felt beneath the fingers, arriving and departing with the breath. Hidden Pulse relates to masses and blockages (pisai). When found at the cun (Inch) pulse sector of the wrist, it indicates blockage caused by upsurge of deficiency-heat (xure) into the chest. At the guan (Pass) pulse sector, it indicates water Qi/oedema (shuiqi) in the Middle Burner (zhongjiao), and loose stool or diarrhoea. At the chi (Foot) pulse sector, it relates to pain in the lower abdomen and abdominal masses (zhengjia), and inability to digest both solids and liquids.

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HEADING: Illustration of Hidden Pulse (fumai)

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