Traditional Chinese Medicine offers us its singular recognition and knowledge of the etiology, pathogenesis, and treatment of dampness-heat syndrome, a condition well defined by its principles. This syndrome is formed by bodily heat that rises disproportionately to counteract excessive accumulation of dampness and vice versa, whereof both pathogenic qualities ultimately succumb to a reciprocal, inseparable habituation with each other. As a result, this inextricable union of opposites brings forth an array of symptoms involving various organs and systems of our bodies.

For instance, dampness-heat accumulation in skin triggers a countless vicissitude of diseases ranging from different forms of eczema to Lichen Planus. On the other hand, dampness-heat assembly in a biliary system becomes a common cause of jaundice, whereas the descent of the two “evils” into a genital-urinary aspect often brings about UTI-like symptoms. Hyperhidrosis, or excessive sweating, is a common manifestation of the syndrome, wherein the location of sweating serves as an indicator of the direction of dampness-heat motion within the body. For example, persistent sweating around the head points to an “upward steaming” of the complex from the middle of abdomen; prolific sweating of the hands and feet features the two qualities moving towards extremities; and profuse sweating of the groin and scrotum exhibits the “downward movement” of this diseased partnership. The syndrome becomes prominent at certain stages of herbal treatment of cancer. Treatment of this syndrome is complex and involves an application of combined nutritional, herbal, and body therapies. Examples of herbs indicated in treating dampness-heat syndrome include Gardenia, Skullcap, and Black Cohosh.

Dr. Alexander Kanevsky practices Herbal, Traditional Chinese, Ayurvedic, Tibetan medicine, combined with Western Medicine, Psychiatry and Psychoanalysis. His office is located at 366 Nassau Street, Princeton, NJ 08540. 609-613-0225.

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