Large Intestine 6: Pianli (Side Passage)

Large Intestine 6 is an acupuncture point on the Large Intestine acupuncture channel.

It is important as a Luo point, but is probably one of the less used luo-connecting points. It’s not that easy to find and is often sore. So, many acupuncturists don’t use it. 

  • Luo-connecting point


Large Intestine 6 - Pianli
Large Intestine 6 – Pianli



There are various ways of finding this point:

  • One quarter of the distance from Large Intestine 5 to Large Intestine 11
  • On the posterior radial edge of the forearm, 3 cun proximal to the wrist flexure. Along the radius when the palm is on the chest, it lies ulnar to the side of the radius.
  • On the radial side of the arm, 3 cun proximal to the wrist crease. Find the two muscles there, the most medial or superior one being the abductor pollicis longus. When pressed firmly, the point is sore.


Needling Large Intestine 6

  • Insert EITHER vertically, but not deeply, up to 0.5 cun OR, when there is inflammation (eg in the wrist), insert transversely, even horizontally.
  • Needling sensation can be quite strong, down to the back of the hand or up the forearm, or just sore locally.



Moxibustion: 5x



  • Clears Heat and Wind
  • Strong affect on Water passages ( ie on the metabolism of fluids)
  • See also actions under Large Intestine luo
  • Because of being the luo-connecting point, Large Intestine 6 has a number of extra properties, See the link above, including, for example, a strong effect on acute ear problems such as tinnitus and deafness. 
  • Many throat, sinus and visual problems caused by Phlegm benefit from this, including tonsillitis
  • Many nasal problems, from Wind or Heat, including epistaxis because it cools Lung Heat
  • Paralysis on the face 
  • Pianli affects the flow of fluids from the Small and Large Intestine zang to the Bladder, and is said to ‘fill up Kidney Yin’, in this case meaning assisting the Bladder to store and redistribute fluids, (especially if used with Small Intestine 7)…
  • … hence one of the best points for facial oedema and, to a lesser extent, oedema anywhere …
  • … and useful, with other points, for retention of urine.
  • Useful for many Wind/Heat problems along the channel, including inflammation in the wrist, the elbow and shoulder and neuralgia in the forearm.
  • As the luo point, Large Intestine 6 has an effect on mental conditions with syndromes of Fullness and Heat, including raving and suicidal fears.
  • If Heat causes constipation try this point.


Comment on Pianli

  • For Wind-Heat invasion, most acupuncturists use other points, including Lung 7 and Large Intestine 4, but this point Pianli is good too
  • Although I have treated tooth pain of indeterminate origin – in other words, the dentist could find no sign of a problem – by stimulating Qi and opening up the channels, I think I’ve done this more often and successfully by using entry-exit points on the face.
  • Probably I’ve used this point most for tonsillitis and facial paralysis when the appropriate syndrome was indicated.
  • On very old, or weak patients, the flesh tissues are so loose, and there may be such vague soreness in various places palpated, that being sure of the point is difficult, or so I find.
Jonathan Brand colours

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