Acupuncture Intervention Guidance from the WFAS

Acupuncture has its own unique abilities within the branches of Traditional Chinese Medicine. As such, it has made great contributions to China’s anti-epidemic history. This is now true for China’s most recent viral outbreak, the Coronavirus.

On March 1, 2020, the World Federation of Acupuncture and Moxibustion Societies (WFAS) issued the Guidance on Acupuncture Intervention for Coronavirus (Second Edition). It states that acupuncture can be used supportively for prevention and treatment of the Coronavirus, its primary role the rehabilitation of patients during the recovery period.

The Protocol outlined prescribes acupuncture for three types of cases: Suspected cases, Confirmed cases, Recovering cases/Home isolation cases. Here are the contents of the Intervention plan for you reference.

Acupuncture Intervention Protocol

1. Observation period (suspected cases)

Main Points

  • (1) UB-12 (Feng Men), UB-13 (Fei Shu), UB-20 (Pi Shu);
  • (2) LI4 (He Gu), LI-11 (Qu Chi), LU-5 (Chi Ze), LU-10 (Yu Ji);
  • (3) REN-06 (Qi Hai), ST36 (Zu san li) and SP-6 (San yin jiao).

Within each group of points, you can choose 1-2 points each time.

Additional Acupoints

  • Fever, dry throat, dry cough: Add GV14 (Da zhui), REN-22 (Tian tu) LU-6 (Kong zui);
  • Nausea, diarrhea, enlarged tongue size, greasy tongue, floating and soft pulse: Add REN-12 (Zhong wan), ST-25 (Tian shu), ST-40 (Feng long);
  • Fatigue and weakness, loss of appetite: with REN-12 (Zhong wan), umbilical acupoints (1 inch on the upper and lower sides of the umbilicus), BL-20 (pi shu);
  • Runny nose, sore muscles, pale tongue and white tongue coating, slow pulse: Add BL-10 (Tian zhu), BL-12 (Feng men), GV14 (Da zhui).

2. Clinical treatment period (confirmed cases)

Main Points

  • (1) LI-04 (He gu), LIV-03 (Tai chong), REN-22 (Tian tu), LU-05 (Chi ze), LU-06 (Kong zui), ST-36 (Zu san li), SP-6 (San yin jiao);
  • (2) UB 11 (Da shu), BL-12 (Feng men), BL-13 (Fei shu), BL-15 (Xin shu), BL-17 (Ge shu);
  • (3) LU-01 (Zhong fu), CV 17 (Tan zhong), REN-06 (Qi hai), REN-04 (Guan yuan).

Additional Acupoints

  • Persistent high fever: Add GV14 (Da zhui)., LI-11 (Qu chi); Or Ex-UE-11 (Shi xuan ), ear tip bleeding;
  • Chest tightness and shortness of breath: plus P-06 (Nei guan), LU-07 (Lie que); or REN-14 (Ju que), LIV-14 (Qi men), KI-06 (Zhao hai);
  • Cough and expectoration: Add LU-7 (Lie que), ST-40 (Feng long), EX-B1 (Ding chuan);
  • Diarrhea and loose stools: Plus ST-25 (Tian shu) and ST-37 (Shang ju xu);
  • Cough with yellow sputum, sticky sputum, constipation: Plus REN-22 (Tian tu), SJ-06 (Zhi gou), ST-25 (Tian shu), ST-40 (Feng Long);
  • With low fever or no fever, nausea, diarrhea, pale or red tongue, white or greasy tongue coating: plus BL-13 (Fei shu), ST-25 (Tian shu), SP-14 (Fu jie), P-06 (Nei guan).

3. Acupuncture intervention during recovery period:

Main Points

  • P-06 (Nei guan), ST-36 (Zu san li), Zhong li, ST-25 (Tian shu), REN-06 (Qi hai).

Additional Acupoints

[Lung and Spleen Qi Deficiency]

  • Pulmonary symptoms such as chest tightness and shortness of breath: Add CV 17 (Tan zhong), UB-13 (Fei shu), LU-01 (Zhong fu);
  • Spleen and stomach symptoms, such as poor appetite and diarrhea: Add REN-13 (Shang wan) and SP-09 (Yin ling quan).

[Qi and yin deficiency]

  • Weak and have shortness of breath: Add CV 17 (Tan zhong), REN-08 (Shen que);
  • Dry mouth and thirst: Add KI-3 (Tai xi) and SJ-04 (Yang chi);
  • Palpitations: Add BL-15 (Xin shu) and BL-14 (Jue yin shu);
  • Excessive sweat: Add LI-04 (He gu), KI-07 (Fu liu), ST-36 (Zu san Li);
  • Insomniac: Add HT-07 (Shen men), EX-HN 3 (Yin tang) Ex-HN (An mian), KI-01 (Yong quan).

[Lung spleen deficiency, phlegm and blood stasis]

  • Chest tightness, shortness of breath and fatigue: Add UB-13 (Fei Shu), UB-20 (Pi Shu), BL-15 (Xin shu), UB-17 (Ge shu), BL-23 (Shen shu), LU-01 (zhong fu), CV 17 (Tan zhong);
  • Difficulty in expectoration: Add ST-40 (Feng long), EX-B1 (Ding chuan).

Translated by Dr. Ann Wang, L.Ac. and Gillian Lata, L.Ac. from The World Federation of Acupuncture and Moxibustion Societies.