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C15 Chinese medical primer: Correlations of the pulses

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'Chart of the Correlations of the Pulses' from Yijing xiaoxue (A Little Primer of the Medical Canon), publ. 1438 (3rd year of the Zhengtong reign period of the Ming dynasty), Juan (Volume) 2: Pulses, Rhymes of the Pulses, 2.

Yijing xiaoxue, in six juan, condenses the medical canon and the work of some of the most celebrated pre-Ming physicians into simple, concise verse. It covers materia medica, the pulses, the channel (meridian) system, disease processes, treatment and the movement of Qi (yun qi). The book is entirely written in rhyme, for ease of memorization. This page is a ready-reference guide to the interpretation of the pulses in the three diagnostic sectors of each wrist (cun - Inch, guan - Pass, and chi -- Foot).

On the left wrist, the heart and small intestine pulses are felt in the cun sector, the liver and gall bladder pulses in the guan sector, and the kidney and bladder pulses in the chi sector.

On the right wrist, the lung and large intestine pulses are felt in the cun sector, the spleen and stomach pulses in the guan sector, and the triple burner (sanjiao) and pericardium (xinbao, lit. heart envelope) pulses in the chi sector.

In terms of the Five Agents, the heart and small intestine belong to Sovereign Fire (jun huo). Their pulse is surging (hong). The liver and gall bladder belong to Wood, and their pulse is wiry (xian). The kidney and bladder belong to Water, and their pulse is sunken (chen). The lung and large intestine belong to Metal, and their pulse is choppy (se). The spleen and stomach belong to Earth, and their pulse is relaxed (huan). The triple burner and pericardium belong to Ministerial Fire (xiang huo), and their pulse is surging (hong).

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