Triple Burner Channel (Sanjiao)

Point Differentiation for the Hand Shao Yang Triple Burner Channel.

Points on the San Jiao Channel primarily clear Heat from the Exterior- i.e. Heat at the Wei and Qi levels with fever, sore throat, heat in the mouth and tongue, (in contradistinction to the Pericardium Channel which clears Heat at the Ying and Blood levels).

The San Jiao, corresponding to Shao Yang, clears Heat from the Shao Yang level in the six divisions differentiation- characterized by alternating chills and fever, bitter taste in the mouth, pain and fullness in the lateral costal and hypochondriac region, loss of appetite, nausea, irritability etc. (The classic model of a Shao Yang Phase pathogenic penetration is based on malaria).

Some points on the Channel ( TB 5 and TB 6 ) can harmonize the Three Jiaos (the internal pathways of the Channel passes through the three Jiao) treating vomiting and constipation.

In this latter regard TB 6 can regulate Liver Qi and many points on the Channel affect symptoms associated with Liver and Gall Bladder pathology- Liver Gall Bladder Heat or Liver Yang uprising, affecting the Eyes, Ears, temples and sides of the head, throat, pain in the Jaw, cheek and tongue etc. (Gall Bladder is Shao Yang related and Liver is its paired Channel, also San Jiao Fire sedates Liver Wood. According to 10 stems theory the Yang paired organ will sedate the Yin Mother ).

Because the San Jiao is Yin Yang paired with the Pericardium, points on the San Jiao Channel are sometimes indicated for pain in the chest and Heart and Heat disturbing the Heart Shen with agitation, restlessness, epilepsy etc. ( TB 1)

Points on the Triple Burner Channel are often used for pain and stiffness in the Shao Yang portions of the arm or leg, and the shoulders, neck and back.
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Guan Chong                         Rushing Pass            Gate’s Pouring            Gate Rush            Gate of Chong

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TB. 1                           Jing Well Metal Point

Clears acute external pathogenic heat esp. from the upper Jiao, and also Wind Heat that has invaded to the Ying level and disturbs the Pericardium (Jing Well point function).

TB 1 also clears ascendant Liver fire (invading Gall Bladder Shao Yang  and San Jiao). As a Jing Well point this point can also treat Wind Stroke.

In all cases it clears the Heat from the Lungs and  esp. from the tongue,eyes and ears.

For adrenals, gonads, hypoglycemia, hypo adrenal, prostatitis (EAV – Dr. Voll)

The Triple Burner Channel is particularly indicated for fever and earache (GM)

For Fever of Tai Yang or Shao Yang origin (GM)

Can be Bled for painful and stiff shoulder joint (Jing Well point function)

Favorite point for fatigue, adrenal exhaustion. Corrects postural hypotension, hypoglycemia, headache with skipping a meal (RS)
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Ye Men            Fluid Gate            Fluid’s Door            Fluid Door

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TB. 2            Ying Spring Water point

Clears heat from the Ears- Wind Heat and Liver Fire- and treats deafness, earache, tinnitus. ]

Also clears heat from the eyes- (redness and dryness and lacrimation) ,

Clears heat from the teeth and gums (Ying Spring function).

Also calms the Spirit and treats palpitations by clearing Heat from the Pericardium ( San Jiao paired Channel).

Esp. for otitis media (GM)

Ear problems from Yin deficiency (RL)

Widely used for Bi pain in the fingers (GM)

Most commonly used for sore throat (RS)

Close to the Hand acupuncture point for the sciatic nerve.

Mind wandering with loss of stability. Hands and feet cold or hot, painfully red and swollen eye, all limbs icy and cold, toothache. (Wors.)
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Zhong Zhu            Central Islet                        Middle Island                        Middle Islet

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TB. 3            `Shu Stream Wood Point                        tonification point

The main distal body point for the ears- so treats tinnitus and deafness, otitis, and blockage of the ears- especially from either Liver Wind or Yang uprising (Wood point of the Shao Yang) or externally invading Wind-Heat. (distal point of a Yang fire Channel)  (as a five element tonification point it also has a tonifying aspect).

In common with other distal Triple Burner points it can clear heat along the course of the Channel giving rise to temporal headache, eye pain, throat pain etc.

In common with other distal Triple Burner points it treats malarial style alternating chills and fever, fever with headache etc. (malaria is a Shao Yang level invasion)

This point clears pain in the shoulder, and arm (Shu stream points benefit the joints)

This point also treats pain in the back, especially at the level of the Heart. (the interior branch of the main channel, luo channel and divergent Channel all pass through the Heart region.)

As the Wood point of a Shao Yang Channel some practitioners feel this point can treat Liver Qi Stagnation with mood swings, hypochondriac pain and depression.

Western practitioners have associated TB 3 with the thyroid and thymus functioning, (EAV – Voll) and use this point to strengthen immunity and treat hypothyroid conditions and chronic allergies.(RS)

Balances sympathetic innervation dominance (OICS)

Moves the Qi and lifts depression in Liver Qi Stagnation esp. combined with GV.20 (GM)

Distal point for temporal headaches

First aid for exhaustion. Lack of ability to grasp things, numbness, spasticity of fingers. (Wors.)
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Yang Chi            Yang Pool            Pool of Yang

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TB. 4            Yuan Source Point

The historical TCM references to this point are few, being similar to other distal Triple Burner Channel points, but the five element tradition uses of this point are extensive, both in China and Japan.

As the Yuan Source point of the Triple Burner this point is significant because the Triple Burner is said to spread the Yuan Source Qi throughout the body, and the Yuan Source points are the controlling points for Yuan Source Qi on each Channel. (GM)

Hence this point is felt to spread the Yuan Source Qi throughout the whole body to treat chronic disease and low Kidney Qi (RS commenting on Japanese Acupuncture use)

This point is also felt to regulate the Chong and Ren Mai  (through its connection to the Yuan Source Qi) to treat irregular and painful periods, amenorrhea,(GM) uterine hemorrhage and tipped uterus (CAM)

This point is believed to regulate the transformation and transportation of fluids throughout the body (Triple Burner function).

Treats obstruction in the channel and relaxes the sinews in arm and shoulder Bi pain (GM)

Moxa on left side to build the Yang of the body

“Return to calm point”  Diabetes, inability to grasp and raise are, facial spasms. (Wors.)
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Wai Guan            Outer Pass            Outer Gate             Gate to the Outside

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TB. 5            Confluent point of the Yang Wei Extra-Channel             Luo point

The Yang Wei Extra-Channel links the six Yang Channels and the Governor Vessel hence TB. 5 is one of the preeminent points on the body to clear all the External Evils -but especially Wind.

This can be either Wind Cold or Wind Heat.

TB. 5 clears heat primarily from the upper Jiao, the Lungs and the Wei and Qi levels (Similarly to LI.4 and in contrast to P.6 which clears heat from the pericardium and the Ying and Wei levels) with fever, red ears and eyes, swelling, tinnitus and deafness.

TB.5 can clear Heat in the Head with such symptoms as epistaxis (nosebleed), toothache, mouth ulcers (stomatitis), cracked lips etc.

TB.5 treats Wind invasion with swollen glands, scrofula and parotitis (mumps) (the course of the Channel passes the cervical and submandibular glands).

TB. 5 is famous for treating Headaches, from virtually any cause (the Yang Wei Extra Channel connects to all the Yang channels which converge on the head) but it is especially noted for treating temporal headache from either Wind Heat invasion or Liver Yang or Wind uprising.

TB.5 can also assist in clearing Heat in the middle and lower Jiao with constipation, vomiting, abdominal pain etc.

As TB. 5 is the Luo point, which connects through the Luo Channel to the Pericardium, it can treat chest pain, especially which radiates to the back.

Like LI.4 and LI.11, TB. 5 is a preeminent point to move Qi for arm pain, shoulder,  elbow and Neck Bi pain, especially Wind Bi pain.

Like many Triple Burner points TB 5 is strongly indicated for Shao Yang Syndrome with alternating fever and chills, lateral costal pain, rib pain, etc.

Retained Placenta (Felix Mann)

Thoracic spine vertebral joint syndrome (DL)

Rib Subluxations (DL)

Unilateral esp. temporal and parietal migraines (CAM)

Unilateral problems anywhere in the body (RS)

“Conserver of yang” – normalizes excess of gonadotropins. (Wors.)
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Zhi Gou            Branch Ditch                        Branching Ditch

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TB.6            Jing River Fire point

TB. 6 is the main point on the Triple Burner Channel to move Stagnant Qi and clear Heat, especially Heat derived from the Liver and Gall Bladder.

In the Upper Jiao.

TB.6 clears Heat with the usual Triple Burnersymptoms – fever, red and painful eyes, tinnitus, deafness, swollen throat, scrofula,. It clears Heat and moves Qi with such symptoms as lockjaw, insufficient lactation, swollen throat, cough with heat and stagnation and oppression of the chest, pleurisy, Heart pain, etc.

In the middle Jiao, TB.6 is the main point to treat Liver Qi stagnation with pain in the ribs and lateral costal region, intercostal neuralgia, distention, vomiting and bloating, throat pain, goiter, etc.

In the Lower Jiao, TB.6 is a main point for constipation from any cause. It is often combined with K.6 for Dryness constipation. Similarly it treats abdominal pain

TB 6 can treat  sudden turmoil disorder with vomiting and diarrhea.

TB 6 Expels Wind Heat in the Blood giving rise to red rashes, psoriasis, eczema, hives which come and go quickly and herpes zoster. (shingles).

With GB 31 for Heat in the Blood skin symptoms (GM)

With GB 34 for Liver Qi Stagnation affecting the flanks (GM)

Pain in the upper back and shoulder esp. from Wind in the channel (DL)

Relieves fluid deficiency type constipation with K 6 (ATRSG)
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Hui Zong            Ancestral Meeting                        Meeting of the Clan                        Converging Channels

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TB.7            Xi cleft point

Not very commonly used. For acute excess patterns – to stop pain in the ears, temples, eyebrow region. (GM)

For confusion, senility, trembling, epilepsy. The patient doesn’t know where to go or what to do (Wors.)
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San Yang Luo            Three Yang Luo            Three Yang Connection

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TB. 8                           Meeting point of the Three Upper Yang Channels

Can be used for Bi pain

Treats sudden deafness and sudden aphasia (sudden loss of voice).

Can also treat somnolence and no desire to move the limbs (moves Qi in the three Yang Channels).

Classically forbidden to needle

Bi pain, especially when the pain area more involves than one Channel on the Yang portion of the arms and shoulders. (GM)

Sudden Deafness combine with TB 9 (RS)

Post operative pneumonectomy pain (CAM)
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Si Du            Four Rivers            Four Ditch

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TB. 9     

Benefits the throat and ears – for sudden aphasia, sore throat and throat obstruction, sudden deafness, sudden tinnitus,

toothache of the lower jaw,

headache, vertigo.

It is a good point for arm pain locally.

 In Japanese acupuncture this point is commonly used for neck pain along the course of the Triple Burner Channel and restriction of neck rotation .

Look for a painful  Ah Shi point in this region.
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Tian Jing            Heavenly Well            Heaven’s Well

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TB.10            He Sea Earth point                        Sedation point.

Treats Phlegm especially in the upper Jiao– (Triple Burner function of moving fluids- which when they do not move can condense to form Phlegm) therefore treats swollen lymph nodes, swollen tonsils and throat, goiter, scrofula (tuberculosis of the lymph nodes with enlarged and hardened lymph nodes in the neck and axilla), coughing of Phlegm, chest and Heart Bi pain.

TB. 10 also treats Shen disturbance from Phlegm or Phlegm Fire disturbing the Heart – with epilepsy, fright, fear, sadness and somnolence. (also Liver Qi stagnation related depression and mood swings (GM)

Like most distal points on this Channel TB.10 clears Heat and Wind from the Channel, especially the upper end of the Channel -unilateral headache, deafness, swelling and cheek pain, swollen throat, (tonsillitis), eye pain, urticaria.

TB. 10 can stop sweating and release the Exterior in Wind invasion.

Like TB.5 and TB.6 , TB.10 also treats pain in the lateral costal region in the middle Jiao

Like TB.5 and TB.6 , TB.10 also treats hemorrhoids, distention and abdominal pain in the lower Jiao.

Treats Bi pain along the course of the Channel, especially at the elbow, for which it is much used.

“Serene tranquility point”. God’s supply house. All elements stem from and are contained here. Most neglected point. in whole body – a magnificent point! It keeps stability of mind, gives peace and serenity to sick patients.
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Qing Leng Yuan            Clear Cold Abyss                        Cooling Gulf

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TB. 11            Name suggests points ability to clear heat.

Can Treat Headache, burning eyes.

Local point for elbow pain. Difficulty raising the shoulder and arm
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Xiao Luo            Dispersing Luo River            Melting Luo River

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TB. 12            Stiffness and pain in the nape of the neck with inability to turn the head.

Pain in the shoulder and arm

Thirst from heat, toothache, headache, chills and fever, madness.
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Nao Hui            Upper Arm Meeting                        Shoulder’s Meeting                        Shoulders Convergence

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TB. 13            Crossing point of the San Jiao and Yang Wei Vessels

In addition to local indications, in common with many upper arm points TB. 13 is indicated for goiter and scrofula. In common with LI. 14 and TB. 14.

TB.13 is also indicated for eye disorders.

Local point for pain and tenderness in the upper arm. This point should always be tested for tenderness (GM)
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Jian Liao

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TB. 14            Shoulder Crevice            Shoulder Seam            Shoulder Opening

Major point for local indications of the shoulder region

Treats Stiffness, pain, immobility and weakness of the shoulder joint and frozen shoulder, bursitis and peri-arthritis of the shoulder joint from

Exterior invasion of Wind, Cold, Damp or Heat, or

Stagnation of Qi and Blood from traumatic injury or

Deficiency of Qi and Blood from overuse, old age etc.

This point is often combined with LI. 15.

Always test for tenderness when choosing between this point and LI 15 (GM)
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Tian Liao             Heavenly Crevice            Heaven’s Seam

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TB. 15            Crossing Point of the Triple Burner, Gall Bladder and Yang Wei Vessels

Major point for local indications of the shoulder region –

Treats pain and stiffness of the shoulder, neck, supraclavicular and scapular regions. Indicated for wandering (Wind Bi) pain in the shoulder region

Can also treat agitation, heat and oppression in the Chest and Heart with chills and fever, Heat in the Body and Absence of sweating.

TB.14 is used more to treat bursitis and arthritis,

TB.15 is used more for muscular involvement.

Normally tender in shoulder pain

Very Good results when needled with moxa (GM)
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Tian You            Window of Heaven                        Heaven’s Window

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TB. 16            Window of Heaven point

Treats swollen lymph nodes locally and in common with other Window of Heaven points TB.16 regulates the Qi between the head and the body – thus treating uprising rebellious Qi – headache, vertigo, sudden deafness, sore eyes, facial swelling ,

weight control- benefits the water balance of the body, (RS)

lower back problems, scoliosis. (RS)

excessive and lively dreams that wake the patient from sleep, (Mann)

Empirical Point for Sudden Deafness (ATRSG)

In Japanese acupuncture the area from TB.16 to TB.17 is used to strengthen immunity when there is suscepointibility to external Wind invasion- causing colds and influenza etc.
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Yi Feng            Wind Screen                        Shielding Wind

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TB 17            Crossing Point of the Triple Burner and Gall Bladder Channels

A major point for the Ears. Treats all ear problems. Tinnitus, dizziness, deafness, loss of balance, Meniere’s etc.

Expels Exterior Wind invasion (name means Wind Screen).

Treats the head symptoms of internal Wind to treat facial paralysis, Bell’s Palsy, trigeminal neuralgia, convulsions, blurred vision, sore eyes, spasm and Lockjaw.

Treats Toothache.

Good for Middle Ear Infections, especially chronic and recurring Ear Infections may drain shortly after treatment (RS)

Needle deeply and with good needle sensation for facial paralysis (GM)

Needle if tender to pressure on the mastoid area (GM)

TB. 18            Tinnitus, deafness, headache, Head Wind, seminal emission, discharge from the eye, dimness of vision

This point is indicated for fright and fear, infantile fright epilepsy, and spasms

             Relates to the Middle ear used to treat otitis media (Voll)
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Lu Xi            Skull’s Rest

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TB. 19            Tinnitus, deafness, earache, otitis media, vomiting

Headache, heavy head, one sided headache,

Tetany (Ode to the One Hundred Symptoms)

A classically forbidden point            Foggy head
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Jiao Sun            Minute Angle                        Angle of Regeneration

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TB. 20            Crossing Point of the triple Burner, Small Intestine and Gall Bladder Channels

Tinnitus, Deafness, red ears.

swollen gums, dry lips, stiffness of the lips, inability to chew, toothache. Tooth decay.

Used for any endocrine problem as related to the hypothalamus (Voll)

A classically forbidden point
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Er Men            Ear Gate                        Ear’s Door

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TB.21            Opens the Ear and disperses heat. Treats tinnitus, deafness, ear pain, itching discharge etc.

A local point for ear inflammation especially from Liver Yang Uprising (GM)

The pulse here measures the Qi of the Ears and Eyes (ATRSG)
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Er He Liao            Ear Harmony Crevice

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TB. 22            Ear Indications and headache, lockjaw, tinnitus

The pulse here measures the Qi of the Ears and Eyes (ATRSG)
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Si Zhu Kong             Silken Bamboo Hollow

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TB. 23            Headache, Eye diseases, facial paralysis

 Especially for headache with eyestrain and pain around the outer corner of the eyebrows.  Esp. if due to Liver Yang uprising (GM)

For facial paralysis with inability to raise the eyebrows.(GM)

For Eye inflammation due to fluorescent lights (Felix Mann)

Insanity (CAM)

Triple Burner channel

  • – Light as a result of Water and Fire being separated by metal
  • – The way that Shen controls the lower forces, the control and the intelligence behind the generation of the Qi and the Shen
  • – the corresponding balancing of the water pathways in the physical body – the generation of blood, nutritive essence, sexual jing, in the three Dan-Tian Nan Jing 66
    • – Fog or mist with dew bubbles and streams or irrigation ditches
  • – The intelligence of the Wei Qi, the defensive force
  • – The connection between triple burner, bladder and kidneys, skin pores and fine hairs
  • – the intelligence of empire building – diplomacy, strategy, force and timing
  • – Protector spirits
  • – Territorial aggression
  • – The Wei Qi
  • – Personality of triple Burner
  • – Animal: Rooster
  • – Branch: Xu         Stabbing with a sword
  • – Time: 9 PM to 11PM contrast to spleen channel and spiraling nature.
  • – Tenth Station of the Cross: Jesus is stripped of his garments
  • – Tree of Life –  sixth branch on the right

Xu – T.B.  The Equity of his Judgment. On the eleventh branch, the equity of the future judgment. Impartial review.

Triple Jiao Channel Clearing Questions

  • – How do you unnecessarily deplete yourself?
  • – Where are you inflexible in life?
  • – What do you believe that defines what you are manifesting in life?
  • – Where do you become too rigid and withdrawn? When do you become too expanded?
  • – What do you defend against?
  • – In what areas do you resist your natural self discipline?
  • – How do you deliberately not live up to your potential?
  • – Do you believe in miracles?