Large Intestine Luo Channel

The Large Intestine Luo channel pathway and its properties aren't usually the first thing acupuncturists learn about, but still! ... very useful when needed.

Note to readers! ...

This page is a bit abstruse if you're a beginner. It's not that the words are any, or at least, much, more difficult than on other pages, but this is about a subject usually taught some way into acupuncture courses.

So some of the concepts need your familiarity with other ideas in Chinese medicine.

Actually, I did this page, and other luo-connecting channel pages, for me.

It means I can look up both the channel and its symptoms  on my smartphone in case I forget them.

If it helps others, great.

For more information about this type of acupuncture channel, click on luo-connecting channels.

Large Intestine Luo channel

  • This Luo channel commences at Pianli, Large Intestine 6.
  • Joins up with the primary channel of the Lungs, 
  • Ascends the arm to Large Intestine 15 Jianyu, and then up to the jaw and cheek
  • One branch goes to the teeth
  • Another branch goes to the ear
  • At the ear it joins what is called the Ancestral Vessel


Here are the classical symptoms of imbalances in this luo channel. Of course in diagnosing these conditions, there would be other symptoms making a fuller picture, familiar to acupuncturists:

  • Fullness: toothache, deafness (which comes on acutely, quickly - less reliable a sign of fullness if chronic)
  • Emptiness:  teeth sensitive to cold and may actually feel cold, and frequently get sore; sensation of congested fullness in the chest
  • Qi stagnation: abdominal distension, stools in many small bits, rather like sheep droppings 
  • Blood stasis: stools contain dark blood; abdominal pain
  • Wind: aversion to cold, with fever and sneezing. Cough. Sore throat. Jaw aches. Headache: alternatively numbness or paralysis of the face. Note: when Wind invades the Lung, Pianli often helps to clear acute oedema.
  • Damp: aversion to cold; diarrhoea, fever; full, heaviness in the abdomen; glands swollen in the abdomen
  • Cold: Severe abdominal pains; diarrhoea
  • Phlegm: swollen lymph nodes in the neck (but may also be phlegm in the Luos of either Stomach or Three Heater)
  • Heat: blood in the stools; stools smell offensive; abdominal pain; thirst


The Large Intestine Luo channel's indications listed above are succinct. When treating someone, many more signs would be looked for to confirm the diagnosis.

For example, if Cold is suspected, one might expect the kind of abdominal pain to be like those listed for Cold.

One would expect other corroborating symptoms as well:

  • the stools here would probably be odourless; 
  • there would be a desire for warmth and warm drinks and food;
  • one would expect the symptoms to be aggravated when cold.
  • There might also be symptoms of stiffness or discomfort along the channel, such as in the shoulder near Large Intestine 15.

So, just taking a single example from the list above, you can see that the signs given are just a reminder of what to expect.

In nearly all cases, one would include the Large Intestine luo point: Pianli, Large Intestine 6.

Links to Luo-connecting channels

List of Luo-connecting points

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