As well as the traditional method of pulse diagnosis, Lee also uses the Shen-Hammer, Contemporary Chinese Pulse Diagnostic system which utilises many more pulse positions and three, rather than two depths for each position to gain more insight into a person’s functioning.
One of the reasons that the first visit is so long, is that a great deal of time is spent feeling the pulses to gather a baseline of information, which is added to at each visit to build a more accurate understanding of a person’s health.
The pulses at the head and ankle may also be felt and this is a classical way to further understand the flow of energy through the body.
Palpation of the abdomen is also very useful to gather further diagnostic information, identifying tender areas or areas with a different temperature, sensitivity, tone or texture to highlight particular meridians and organ systems with imbalance.
Palpating the 14 main meridians (again, for temperature, sensitivity, tone and texture) can be important to identify energetic blockages along these pathways. It may not be possible to palpate all of the meridians in the first session, so your practitioner may choose to work with the meridians that traverse any problematic areas first.
It is important to note, that all of the diagnostic methods are used within the boundaries of a patient’s comfort levels and performed respectfully. If you have any concerns or questions about this process please ask.
This is the diagnostic process that people are most familiar with in the West! It involves asking
about many areas including the main complaint in great detail. For example, with headaches you might be asked where in the head is the pain felt, what is the quality of the pain (eg: sharp, dull, throbbing, stabbing, contracting, expanding, hot, cold, moves around etc), what time of day does it appear, what effect does certain foods and drinks have on it, what makes it better or worse and so on.
You will be asked about any medication, supplements, diet, lifestyle, sleep, the body-systems such as bowels and urination, mental functioning, mood and emotional issues, relationships, birth and childhood history as well as stressful periods and other aspects of life that may be relevant. All of the information you share with your practitioner is kept in the strictest confidence.
Integrating all of the information from all of these methods is where the traditional Chinese medicine diagnosis comes to fruition. Once this has happened, a treatment strategy can be formulated to provide a very specific treatment plan for the individual. This can be modified at every treatment based on observations of any changes identified using the above system of diagnosis.