Qiological Community

Treating Irritable Bowel, bloating w/Sa'am

Riffing off of Sarah’s current bloating patient, one chief complaint I have difficulty treating with just Sa’am is irritable bowel/bloating - in particular bloating below the navel. I have had successes for sure but it typically involved diet changes, lifestyle changes (i.e. chewing food, not eating rushed), and CHM.

My experience is that since Sa’am there are so many complaints I can treat with only needles whereas PS (Pre-Sa’am) I would need other modalities such as CHM, Tuina, cupping, electro etc.

Treating bloating especially people that have it below the navel, alternating constipation/loose because they are on Mirilax, Mg, etc I find a challenge. Especially those young 30/40-something women that seem so darn healthy otherwise. They eat well, exercise etc and have no clear deficient or excess channels.

What are other’s experience? Any case studies where you only employed Sa’am or maybe Sa’am with some minor diet tweaks?

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I had one of those ‘young otherwise darn healthy women’ just last week whose main complaint was intense bloating (“I haven’t been able to wear jeans in a few years now”) . . . a lot of signs and symptoms pointed to KI XS. I did a SI+ treatment and by the end of the session, with tremendous joy, she reported her belly shrinking in circumference by what felt to her like a good inch.

I agree bloating in the lower abdomen can be super tricky. I have one patient who I have right now that responds so well to SAAM and so many things have resolved except the lower abd bloating.
The one time I had the best result with patient with bloating was with BL+. She had heavy bleeding and was super chatty with a rapid pulse and lots of heat signs. I was thinking all about her bleeding at the time but the minute I put in BL+ she immediately felt like the bloating was easing. It was significant. I could see it by the end of the treatment. I think in those situations I turn to Sharon’s advice. How would I treat them if I didn’t know they had bloating. I also find Kristin’s advice from a while back to consider all the channels that run over the abdomen. I have found that helpful.

@Daniel. Let us know if it held. I find it toughest with thinner women that get the diagnosis du jour of SIBO.

Did it hold where she progressively got better.

Agreed for sure, the GMP has given way more clinical awareness than just herbs… what Kristin said way back “what is the grossest thing in the room”. Then sometimes nothing jumps out and it gets more difficult.


Funny she just came in to see me today. She hasn’t had the bloating for a long time but it just recently came back however I don’t want to toot my own horn here. She had terrible endometriosis and had surgery scheduled for about 2 weeks after I saw her for that treatment. She credits the long stint without bloating on the surgery but she also does remember how much the bloating went down at that treatment. She recently has been coming in for insomnia and is very SJ, GB and HT XS. I just did PC+ for her first tx back and did LIV + today. I am considering BL+ at her next treatment so I’ll tell you how it goes.

interesting - the case I mention above - also has endometriosis

There are some that say this bloating/digestive issues that we are discussing called the catch all phrase IBS can often be endometriosis. From a Sa’am perspective I am not sure it matters to us as we go by what we see/feel/hear. But it is good to be aware about the connection.
Here is a good article discussing the more severe pelvic pain which is not necessarily present in what we might see. But still helpful IMO.


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