Often than not clients will say "oh I usually have a pretty normal heart rate if that's what you are feeling for" when the practitioner feels for the pulse on the wrists. One important aspect of Chinese Medicine diagnostics is none other than the unique technique of "Pulse Diagnosis". But what's the principle behind pulse reading?
The earliest record for pulse diagnosis can be traced back to the Classical Era of Ancient China. By the time it reached the Spring and Autumn and the Warring States Period, pulse diagnosis was very much well established. Bian Que (407-310BC) was notable for his exceptional skills in Chinese Medicine diagnostics and particularly in pulse diagnosis during that time.
Today, pulse diagnosis is still very much used in the same way.
The formation of the pulse depends on a few important factors: the heart function, the blood vessels, and the quality and quantity of the blood supply. All of which determine the change in pulse in terms of form and rate. The generation of the pulse is directly related to the heart's pulsation (the rise and decline of heart Qi). It can first reflect any abnormality in the heart organ, such as irregular heart beat or heart diseases. The free flow of blood vessels can also change the form of the pulse, such as arteriosclerosis. Pulse generation also requires blood supply and with the coordination of other organs. Therefore, the pulse reflects not only the state of your internal health, but also the functions and energy supply (qi) of all organs (see image below).
So next time when you're in the clinic, ask your practitioner "what is the state of my organ qi" and you'll sound just like a professional!