Gallbladder 37 Guangming Bright and Clear

How did the Chinese discover what Gallbladder 37 did, probably 2500 years ago? It’s become an important point, not least for visual problems.

How did the ancient Chinese discover what Gallbladder 37, Guangming, does?

Location

On the lateral surface of the leg, 5 cun proximal to the prominence of the lateral malleolus, anterior to the edge of the fibula.

 

gallbladder 37
Gallbladder-37-Guangming

 

Needling

Needle Gallbladder 37 vertically, up to 1.5 cun.

Needling sensation

Pressure here sometimes elicits nerve feelings around Gallbladder 40. Needling doesn’t necessarily do this, just produces local deqi sensation.

 

Moxa

Moxibustion: up to 5 cones.

 

Actions of Gallbladder 37

  • Regulates the Liver
  • Benefits vision
  • Expels Wind-Damp
  • Opens the channel to Qi movement, easing pain
  • To understand more about how this point works, click on Gallbladder Luo.

 

Being the Gallbladder luo point, Gallbladder 37 has a very close relationship with the Liver‘s actions.

When there is pain or tension, the Liver is nearly always involved and this point can be seen as kind of lesser Taichong – Liver 3. Hence it helps Qi move more freely, helping in the removal of obstructions to the free movement of Qi: this alleviates pain.

The Liver has a major influence on vision, not least via Liver Blood. This point is said to ‘clean’ the Liver and ‘brighten’ the eyes. It is useful in all eye diseases and problems, including night blindness and atrophy of the optic nerve.

 

Comment on Gallbladder 37

Firstly, do you wonder what – in TCM theory – your Gallbladder is for? Read it up here!

EYE

Gallbladder 37 is listed as acting on Wind-Damp. Wind-Damp occurs early on when an external pathogenic factor invades the body. The body’s reaction to this includes swollen neck glands, sweating, stiffness and aching of muscles and the neck, a general sense of heaviness, swollen aching joints and feverishness, usually with preference for warmth. Wind-Damp blocks the luo-connecting channels and this causes swelling and aches.

I think it also helps Damp-Heat along the channel or in the eye, with problems like phlegm in the eye, redness, irritation, blepharitis, itching and pain. 

 

The Channel

This point can also be used for other problems along the Gallbladder channel, not forgetting the pathway of the Gallbladder Luo channel, which not only travels to the foot but also up the main Liver channel.

Traditionally, and in my experience, this point helps conditions caused by Qi Stagnation in the Liver or Gallbladder channels with symptoms such as, but not only, the following:

  • Bi syndrome or numbness in the legs meaning you can’t easily stand for long
  • Sore leg or knee
  • Atrophy disorder of the leg
  • Difficulty rising to feet from sitting position
  • Breast distension or pain

 

Mental attributes of the point Gallbladder 37

All Luo points can affect the mind, having a calming effect. For some of them it is easy to discern the syndrome and mental condition for which they are helpful (eg manic depression, in the case of Small Intestine 7) but for others, it’s not.

I’m not sure what mental conditions this point helps, but at one lecture I remember learning that it helped psychiatric conditions of nervous origin.

 

Myopia – a case study from 1982

My first job when working in a general hospital in Nanjing in 1982, or at least the first job I remember, was to treat a 11-year old girl who had developed myopia. The diagnosis was something like deficiency of Qi and Blood reaching the eye, the underlying reason being that she was growing very fast and her Kidney Qi couldn’t keep up.

 

7 Star Hammer

We used Three-Heater 3 and this point, Gallbladder 37.

However, the reason I remember it so clearly is because I then had to spend 20 minutes on each eyelid (her eyes closed) with the 7 Star hammer.

 

7-star-hammer

She was remarkably docile during this, but of course she didn’t know that I’d hardly ever used the 7 Star hammer before!

After 20 minutes her eyelids were very red from the blood rush to the skin. After 40 minutes (2 x 20) I had a very sore wrist.

Surprisingly, at least to me, we did nothing about the Kidney Qi.

I did this every day for 3 weeks, excluding weekends. At the end I was pretty good with the 7 Star Hammer, and her eyesight was back to normal.

I was astonished by this result.

 

Jonathan Brand colours

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