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Acupuncture treatment for Chicken Pox

From the acupuncture science point of view, chicken pox is caused by an external invasion of wind an
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Chickenpox also known as varicella, is a highly contagious disease caused by the infection with varicella zoster virus (VZV). The disease results in a characteristic skin rash that forms small, itchy blisters, which eventually scab over. However, complications occasionally include pneumonia, inflammation of the brain or bacterial infections of the skin among others.1

In this regard, chickenpox spreads easily through the coughs and sneezes of an infected person. It may be spread from one to two days before the rash appears until all lesions have crusted over. It may also spread through contact with the blisters. Those with shingles may spread chickenpox to those who are not immune through contact with the blisters.2








The early symptoms for adults include nausea, loss of appetite, aching muscles and headache. This is followed by the characteristic rash or oral sores and a low-grade fever that signal the presence of the disease. Oral manifestations of the disease precede the external rash. In children, the first sign is the rash or the spots in the oral cavity. The rash begins as small red dots on the face, scalp, torso, upper arms and legs; progressing over 10–12 hours to small bumps, blisters and pustules; followed by umbilication and the formation of scabs.3

At the blister stage, intense itching is commonly present. Blisters also occur on the palms, soles and genital area. Commonly, visible evidence of the disease develops in the oral cavity and tonsil areas in the form of small ulcers which can be painful or itchy; this internal rash precede the external rash by 1 to 3 days. These symptoms of chickenpox appear 10 to 21 days after exposure to a contagious person. Adults have a more widespread rash, longer fever and they are more likely to experience complications like varicella pneumonia.4

The condition usually resolves by itself within a couple of weeks. The rash may last for up to one month. Chickenpox is contagious starting from one to two days before the appearance of the rash and lasts until the lesions have crusted. It is generally more severe in adult men than in women or children. The most common late complication of chickenpox is shingles (herpes zoster), caused by reactivation of the varicella zoster virus decades after the initial, often childhood chickenpox infection.5



Varicella zoster is the virus responsible for the chickenpox disease. It is noted that this virus is highly contagious. Since it can spread through direct contact with the rash. Other than contact, one may get chickenpox by droplets dispersed into the air.6



Related Acupuncture Points :

LU-5, KD-7, KD-2, LV-2, GB-41, SI-3, GB-20, GB-21, GB-30.

In detail, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) explains that chicken pox is due to the presence of a pathogenic factor damp, heat or wind in the body. Damp: the lesions are fluid and on the lower body. Heat: The blisters will have more redness and severe pain. Wind: The lesions will be more itching and on the upper body. In this regard, the location of the lesions will indicate the channel that has been affected in TCM; On the one hand, lesions on the head and face involve the yangming and shaoyang channels. On the other hand, lesions on the flanks and intercostal involve Liver and Gallbladder channels.7

Acupuncture and Chinese herbal formulas are very effective when combined together in treating all stages of chicken pox. Acupuncture is known to boost the immune system, deactivate the virus, assist as a pain reliever, clear the eruptions and also shorten the healing time. The overall effect is to strengthen the body’s resistance and aid in expelling the toxins. Clearly, the treatment is most effective given right after the first symptom appears.8


  1. Routine vaccination against chickenpox – dtb.bmj.com – 2012, http://dtb.bmj.com/content/50/4/42.long
  2. About Chickenpox – cdc.gov – 2017, http://www.cdc.gov/chickenpox/about/
  3. Chickenpox – emedicine.medscape.com – 2017, http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/1131785-overview
  4. Chickenpox – emedicine.medscape.com – 2017, http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/1131785-overview
  5. Symptoms of chickenpox – nhs.uk – 2017, http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Chickenpox/Pages/Symptoms.aspx
  6. Chicken Pox – mayoclinic.org – 2017, http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/chickenpox/symptoms-causes/dxc-20191277
  7. Acupuncture and chicken pox – acupunctureanddisease.blogspot.it – 2016, http://acupunctureanddisease.blogspot.it/2016/11/acupuncture-and-chicken-pox.html
  8. What is shingles? – turningpointacupuncture.com.au – 2017, https://turningpointacupuncture.com.au/tag/chicken-pox-virus/