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Motor Neuron Disease (MND)


Hi Chad,

I have read the section on MS. I want to know about MND. The patient is diagnosed as a patient of extended (not localised) MND for last two years and the diagnosis has been reconfirmed by allopathic investigations. Motor functions were lost in the following sequance: First the legs became rigid and lost mobility, then arms became flaccid, there is apparent wasting of muscles on hands, arms, now neck, voice and speech are getting affected. Next, I am told that the diaphragm will be affected and the patient may have to be put on ventillator, but presently, legs, arms, neck, speech and voice are affected, there is no breathing problem. She can chew and gulp food put in her mouth. Difficult to stick out tongue or can not touch tongue to pallat. Speaking is better with lying position but difficult with sitting or standing position. There is no loss of sensation. My general observation suggests Yin deficiency. There is also five heart heat that evidences Yin deficiency. TCM P-3 and H-3 are painful. Patien is obviously not able to move legs or arms so is dependent on nursing assistance for all routines.

Can you please suggest acupoints along with tone sedate instructions?


Motor Neuron Disease, or what is also known as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) or "Charcot's Disease" or "Lou Gehrig's, is a difficult condition to treat with acupuncture. Personally, I've had good results at minimizing the progression of the disease and improving function overall even in patients who started treatment relatively immobile and on using a respirator for breathing.

The general protocol that we use for ALS/MND is as follows - the tuina aspects are a very important part of the treatment.

Main Points

<li>Tiandong - used to effect the vertebral artery for circulation in the brain - best when used with very strong and deep tuina. Should be on the side that elicits the most pressure pain, or both if they are equal.</li>
<li>TH 16, SI 16, ST 12 - Window of the sky points - used to effect circulation into the brain</li>
<li>GB 19 - effects the visual cortex of the brain and effects muscle coordination</li>
<li>GV 20 - motor cortex function</li>
<li>Yiming - we use for insomnia and poor circulation to and from the brain</li>
<li>huatuo of C2 - effects frontal lobe</li>
<li>UB 9 - used to effect the functions of the cerebellum</li>
<li>LI 4 - drain excess energy from the head, improve movement in hands/arms</li>
<li>ST 36 - improve energy overall and muscle function</li>

These points would be used, starting with strong tuina on the sky window points, tiandong and c1 and c2 huatuo area, general even needling technique for the points (and other tcm points as appropriate for overall tcm diagnosis), then after needles are removed, very strong tuina again on the same points and the huatuo area of C1, C2.


Thanks Chad,

Some ray of hope for containing the progress of MND.

DD Chhaya


Dear Chad,

The lady with MND passed away a couple of months back at a stage where her motor functions were totally gone and her to ngue could not pronounce words with voice becomoing feeble. Her lungs were not impacted till last but on the first indication of breathing trouble, she died while being taken to hispital.

Now there is a second MND case of a qualified medical allopath male who is now bed redden. I shall try these points on him. What we need in such patients is retention of capability to speak with clear voice. If we can help only this much it would be a great help.

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