Monday, October 6, 2008

Three jiaos

The identification of disease according to the Three Burners was first described in the Qing Dynasty by Wu Ju Tong in his book "A Systematic Identification of Febrile Diseases". The system is often combined with theory when diagnosing and treating an externally contracted disease caused by a wind-heat pathogen. The disease will be diagnosed and understood according to its location within the three burners. This system is used within the practice of Chinese herbal medicine, in conjunction with acupuncture and other modalities. Note that San Jiao theory differs slightly from the San Jiao organ, or channel ; referred to additionally as Triple Heater, San Jiao, and Triple Burner. Viewed by Chinese Medicine as the passage of heat and fluid throughout the body, ''Elementary Questions ''' explains, "The Triple Burner holds the office of the sluices; it manifests as the waterways."

The three burners are most commonly referred to by their respective names:

* Upper Jiao
* Middle Jiao
* Lower Jiao

Upper Jiao


The Upper Jiao refers to the upper part of the body, and includes the , , and organs. The Pericardium is the corresponding internal organ of the Triple Burner . Patterns that affect the upper burner include:

* Wind-heat invading the lungs — symptoms include fever, aversion to cold, headache, sore throat, red and swollen tonsils, red tip on tongue, floating-rapid pulse.

* Heat in the lungs — symptoms include fever, sweating, cough, asthma, thirst, red tongue with yellow coat, rapid pulse.

* Heat in the pericardium — symptoms include fever, delirium, aphasia, burning feeling in epigastrium, cold limbs, dark red tongue with no coat, fine-rapid pulse.

Middle Jiao


The middle jiao refers to the midsection of the body and includes the , , and organs.

* Heat in Yang Ming — symptoms include high fever, profuse sweating, constipation, large thirst, irritability or delirium, red tongue with dry yellow coat, deep and full pulse. The yang ming pattern is often referred to as the Four Bigs — big fever, big sweat, big thirst, big pulse.

* Damp-Heat invading the Spleen — symptoms include aversion to cold, low fever in the afternoon, feeling of heaviness, nausea, vomiting, white-sticky tongue coat, soft and slow pulse.

Lower Jiao


The lower jiao refers to the lower section of the body and includes the and s, the and the .

* Lower jiao pattern — symptoms include low grade fever in the afternoon, hot palms and soles , dry mouth, convulsions, deep-red tongue with no coat, fine-rapid pulse.

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