Conception Vessel 23, Ren-23 Lianquan

Conception Vessel Points

Conception Vessel 23, Ren-23 Lianquan, Pure (or Clear) Spring, is the 23rd point on the Conception Vessel, one of the so-called ‘Extraordinary’ acupuncture channels. (Click here for information on TCM theory and here for a list of the acupuncture meridians.)

It is right up there under the root of your tongue, but don’t worry, you get at it from outside, not inside, your mouth! Good for when you lose your voice.

Ren 23
  • This point also lies on the Yin Wei (Yin Linking) channel.

Location of Conception Vessel 23

On the mid-line, in the angle between the throat and the chin, above the Adam’s apple, just superior to and in the depression above the hyoid bone.

Another way of locating it is that it usually lies midway between the tip of the cricoid cartilage and the border of the mandible (ie the chin bone) – but you’ve still got to locate the cricoid cartilage which is the cartilage inferior to the laryngeal prominence, the Adam’s Apple.

Needling and Moxa Ren 23

Point the needle directly upwards towards the vertex. Up to 1 cun. Tell the patient not to talk or swallow as the needle is being inserted, and preferably not while the needle is in place. (Which is easier said than done, and rather like telling somebody not to think of a pink elephant.)


Needle Sensation

Locally and under the tongue. It feels like a needle or fish-bone. Surprisingly many patients hardly feel the actual insertion through the skin, perhaps because of fewer nerves in that area.



Up to 7 cones, though some books forbid it here.


ACTIONS of Pure Spring

  • Eases the throat, tongue and voice
  • Helps to descend qi
  • Yin Wei point


Eases the Throat, tongue and voice

  • Stiffness in the throat or tongue as during a laryngeal or pharyngeal infection, or after a stroke
  • Lost voice, problems speaking
  • Coughing, especially from an itch high in the throat
  • Swelling and pain in the tongue or base of the tongue. (I used Conception Vessel 23, Ren-23 once in a patient whose tongue had swollen after it was stung by a bee he’d inadvertently chewed on.)
  • Difficulty breathing, particularly from swollen throat
  • Benefits fluid production in the mouth, though can also be used for excessive dribbling


Descends Qi

  • Helps energy descend, as during, for example, bronchitis, pharyngitis, tonsillitis, cough


Point of the Yin Wei channel

  • The Yin Wei (Linking) channel runs up through a number of very important points on the leg yin channels, starting in the region of Spleen 6 (though officially commencing at Kidney 9) but this is its first and last point on the Conception Vessel.
  • The Yin Wei channel is said to link all the Yin channels, so is yin promoting. In other words it nourishes, calms and moistens, and descends qi.
  • For these purposes, this point might be used with Kidney 9, or other points like Spleen 6.
  • For swelling under the tongue, Conception Vessel 23 was traditionally used with Pericardium 9 but for calming and grounding someone a more powerful point is Kidney 1.

However, it’s all very well to suggest these points, but when you are very anxious and have lost your voice, you may not be very amenable to having this point and Kidney 1 needled.


To access other points on the Conception Vessel, click below:

Ren-1HuiyinYin Meeting Place
Ren-2QuguCrooked Bone
Ren-3ZhongjiUtmost Middle
Ren-4GuanyuanSource Gate
Ren-6QihaiSea of Qi
Ren-7Yin JiaoYin Intersection/td>
Ren-8ShenqueSpirit Palace Pathway
Ren-9ShuifenWater Separation
Ren-10XiawanLower Stomach Duct
Ren-11JianliEarthing Within
Ren-12ZhongwanUtmost Middle
Ren-13ShangwanUpper Stomach Duct
Ren-14JuqueGreat Palace Gateway
Ren-16ZhongtingCentral Hall
Ren-17ShangzhongMiddle of the Chest
Ren-18YutangJade Hall
Ren-19ZigongPurple Palace
Ren-20HuagaiFlower Covering
Ren-21XuanjiJade Pearl
Ren-22TiantuHeavenly Rushing
Ren-23LianquanClear Spring
Ren-24ChengjiangFluid Container
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