Kidney Disease and Moxibustion

Moxibustion is a treatment modality of Traditional Chinese Medicine in Miami that utilizes a burning stick or cone of moxa which is applied over or on specific acupoints. It is sometimes used alongside acupuncture treatment. A natural form of treatment, moxibustion involves the burning of a mugwort plant to promote healing. As with all types of traditional Chinese medicine techniques, the aim of moxibustion is to, maintain overall well being and health of the body by stimulating the flow of vital energy (chi) and to strengthen the blood.

Kidney Disease and Moxibustion

Almost all Kidney conditions are functional disorders and chronic conditions. Patients with chronic disease have a cold or stagnant underlying condition, based on the theory of Traditional Chinese Medicine. This even applies to patients who seem to be manifesting heat, but actually suffer from an underlying chronic cold within their system that brings about the heat-syndrome-like symptoms which are body responses to counter the chronic cold as an attempt to balance the body.

Moxibustion is used to warm the energy channels or meridians and to remove the cold in the body. This can lead to a smoother circulation of chi and blood. When used in patients with kidney disease, moxibustion, by and large, can help strengthen the immune system of the patient and give the damage tissue and kidneys a better internal environment to self-heal and improve.

Aside from treating kidney disease, a few other uses of moxibustion include the treatment of bad mood, weak immunity, pain, fatigue, and high blood pressure.

What are the Types of Moxibustion?

There are two types of moxibustion therapy: Indirect Moxibustion and Direct Moxibustion.

Indirect Moxibustion

This procedure applies burning moxa either on top of an acupuncture needle or just above the skin. This is the most common form of moxibustion used in the States because it rarely causes injury to the patient.

Direct Moxibustion

In direct moxibustion, the moxa is usually burned on the acupuncture point itself. A moxa cone or stick is placed directly on the skin.

It usually leaves scars on the patient’s skin and is obviously a painful procedure. Direct Moxibustion is further classified into two forms– non-scarring and scarring. In non-scaring direct moxibustion, the moxa is placed on the point and lit, but before it burns the skin it is removed. Patients usually experience a warm relaxing sensation that deeply penetrates deep into the skin. Unless the burning moxa is left in place for too long, this technique should not cause any scarring, blistering and/or pain.

In the scarring technique, the moxa is allowed to burn itself out completely on the acupoint after it is applied and lit. This technique usually leads to local blistering after the treatment site has healed.

Side effects:

When you choose direct moxibustion therapy, expect to feel pain during and after treatment and some blistering on your skin after healing. If taken internally, essential oils from wormwood and mugwort can result in adverse reactions; however, when they’re applied to the skin, their side effects are much lower.

Moxibustion is also contraindicated for people with diabetes.


Moxibustion is considered a safe and viable treatment for people with chronic conditions. However, it is not for everyone. It is especially effective for people with stagnant or cold conditions but it won’t work and may even be harmful for people diagnosed with excessive heat in their bodies.

You should not get moxibustion if are suffering from respiratory infections or other related conditions. This is because the treatment tends to generate lots of odor and smoke that can be harmful for those with respiratory problems.