The six extra Fu organs of the Brain, Gallbladder, Marrow, Bones, Vessels and Uterus can be influenced by various connections with the abdomen, and all have a direct or indirect connection with the Kidneys (Maciocia. G, 2005, pp. 123-125).
Located in the lower abdomen, the uterus is closely related to the Kidney, Ren and Chong meridians. The Ren Mai (Conception Vessel) and the Chong Mai (Penetrating Vessel) originate from the Uterus and so have a huge influence on menstruation, conception/fertility and pregnancy. ‘If Kidney Essence is weak the Ren and Chong Mai will be empty and the Uterus will not be supplied with adequate Qi and Blood leading to amenorrhea, irregular cycles and infertility’ (Maciocia. G, 2005, pp. 123). The Chong Mai meridian connects with the Kidney meridian from Kid 11 (Hengu) to Kid 21 (Youmen). Kidney 13 (Qixue) and other points along the Kidney meridian at this level can be used to influence both the Chong Mai and the Kidney to improve uterine function.
The Stomach point St 30 (Qichong) connects with another branch of the Chong Mai. This can explain why some women experience nausea and vomiting during menstruation and in pregnancy as a result of changes in the Uterus. Other points in this area of the abdomen, such as Zigong (M-CA-18), will improve Blood and Qi flow and directly influence menstruation, conception and fertility.
The Uterus has a very close functional relationship with Blood, and so normal uterine activity is very much dependant on the Spleen producing enough Blood, the Heart circulating Blood and the Liver storing Blood. Problems with any of these Yin organs can be directly addressed through abdominal acupuncture to ensure normal menstrual cycles and fertility. As Ren 12 (Zhongwan) is at the centre, the middle of the Conception Vessel, it conceivably treats all Yin meridians (Lore, R., 2005).
The term ‘Uterus’ also applies to men and can be translated as Red Field (Dantian) or the Room of Essence. Male reproductive function is also dependant on strong Kidney Essence and the Du Mai (Governing Vessel). Empty Kidney and Du Mai will result in problems such as impotence, premature ejaculation, watery or clear sperm, nocturnal emissions, spermatorrhoea and other male fertility problems (Maciocia. G, 2005, pp. 124). All these male fertility issues can also be treated well using abdominal acupuncture. Many abdominal prescriptions nourish pre-heaven Qi of the Kidneys with post-heaven Qi from the Spleen thus strengthening the Kidneys to support fertility, conception and pregnancy (abdominal acupuncture is contraindicated during pregnancy).
The Brain function is considered to be influenced by many organs including the Kidneys, the Heart and the Liver in particular (see Marrow and Bones below). These meridians are all accessed through the abdomen that makes Brain problems treatable through abdominal acupuncture. In the Spiritual Axis, it is stated in chapter 33 that, ‘The Brain is the sea of Marrow extending from the top of the head to the point Feng Fu (Du 16).’ The Brain is also influenced by the Du Mai, which has a Biao Li (internal: external) relationship with the Ren Mai, and points such as Du 16 (Fengfu) can be easily stimulated through Ren 11 (Jianli). The image of the turtle has its head in the region of Ren 11(Jianli) and Ren 12 (Zhongwan) allowing this area to treat all Brain problems. The abdomen is known as our second brain with the highest number of neurones outside of the brain and spinal cord. It is also where 95% of serotonin is found and so the abdomen is, therefore, able to address many emotional and psychological conditions such as obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD), depression and anxiety, (Dr. Keown, D. 2014, p.200) as discussed below.
Marrow and Bone
Both of these are said to be under the jurisdiction of the Kidney. Kidney Essence produces both spinal and Brain Marrow. Marrow develops in Bone cavities and nourishes Bone. Therefore strong Kidney Essence is responsible for both Bone and Marrow production and nourishment. If the Kidneys are deficient, Marrow cannot be abundant. The Kidneys are particularly well maintained through the function of Ren 6 (Qihai) and Ren 4 (Guanyuan).
Abdominal acupuncture prescriptions such as ‘Bringing the Qi Home’, which has a particular influence on nourishing pre-heaven Qi with post-heaven Qi from the Spleen and the Stomach, ensures that Kidney Essence remains strong to sustain healthy Bones and Marrow.
‘The Heart dominates the Blood and the Vessels’, as stated in the 44th chapter of the ancient writings, Suwen (or ‘Plain Questions’). If Heart Qi is strong the Vessels will carry the Blood and remain healthy. The Heart is represented on a number of levels through the abdomen and it can be influenced through the earth (deep) level where the Ba Gua hologram places the Heart at the level of Ren 12 (Zhongwan). The Heart can also be treated through its interaction with the Kidney and the Spleen and often points along the Kidney meridian on the left side are used to treat Heart conditions. The Kidney Essence is also vital as it assists through the production of Marrow, which has a role to play in Blood production. The production of Blood is dependent on the original (Yuan) Qi of the Kidneys (transported by the TB), which contributes to the transformation of food (by the TB) (Gu) Qi into Blood. The abdomen houses a number of influential points (described above) that can directly influence the functions of the TB.
The Gallbladder meridian passes through the hypochondrium area of the abdomen and is reflected on the Ba Gua as being in the Zhen Gua, which is to the right of the midline. Gallbladder conditions can be treated by needling this area or by using the Liver Qi (elbow) point (Ab1) on the right.