Man Had 42 Pearls Lodged In His Flesh In Alternative Medicine Gone Wrong

4790-P7Today’s waking nightmare via Your Jewish News:

A 61-year-old man named Zou of Beijing, China, had to undergo emergency surgery to remove 42 pearls that were embedded in his body for years as part of an unusual remedy for severe pain in the legs.

Doctors in Changsha, Hunan Province, removed the pearls from the man’s waist, hips and legs. Zou suffered from back and leg pain when a friend introduced him to a doctor in Yiyang, Hunan Province, who places pearls under the skin in order to heal pain.

One of Zou’s relatives who underwent the pearl therapy, got better. However, Zou started experiencing a sharp pain in his legs last year, which subsequently left him unable to walk. As a result of the unusual remedy, Zou had contracted bilateral femoral head necrosis, a condition which stops blood supply to the bone.

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  • Jin The Ninja

    i’ve heard of this within chinese medicine. the pearls are thought to stimulate anti-pain meridians and maintain constant flow of chi to the injured body part. it’s actually very similar to a treatment called “susuk” which is part of malaysian shamanism. theoretically it makes sense within TCM, but acupuncture and moxibustion remain stalwarts for a reason. they are safe, effective and non-invasive. i guess he didn’t want to bother with on going treatment…

  • Kevin Leonard

    To be clear, this is neither Traditional Chinese Medicine, nor Classical Chinese Medicine. Ground pearls are used topically for beauty treatment, but that is all. It is possible the “doctor” misunderstood a Taoist qigong text which refers to circulating a pearl through the meridians, but that pearl is not a physical pearl – it is a metaphor for qi that has been condensed through practiced meditation.

    The hospital which removed the 42 pearls, Nianlun Orthopaedics Hospital, has TCM doctors on staff, and they have warned against “folk medicine.”

    Let’s not confuse the two.

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