Phlegm Misting Orifice

Phlegm Misting Orifice

No, Phlegm Misting Orifice is not from a random word generator or the name of a thrash metal band, although it would be a good one.

Back Story.

One of the benefits of the electronic medical record (EMR) is that you can see see the medical records of patients in other medical systems.  Once the patient signs a release, you can see labs, x-rays and notes from other providers.  And that is very handy, being much faster and more complete than a stack of faxes.

I was sitting in the charting room and one of the other docs asks "What is Phlegm Misting Orifice?"

I never heard of it.

It turns out they were reviewing a patient's clinic medical record on the EMR and one of the patients providers was a naturopath.

For a patient that had a prior stroke evidently all that was in the assessment and plan was Phlegm Misting Orifice.  That is was the doc told me, I did not look at the record.

It sounded like a procedure of some sort, and one that I would not want to have.  But it is not.

It is part of Traditional Chinese Pseudo-Medicine.

There is a concept in Chinese medicine depicting a phlegm disorder primarily affecting brain functions. The terminology of "phlegm misting the orifices of the heart" (tanmi xinqiao) is frequently used for this concept.

You can read about it at the above link. When compared to reality, Phlegm Misting Orifice makes no sense to me, but it is a TCM explanation for a stroke and other neurologic symptoms.

Recently I came across qi deficiency and blood stagnation as a reason for acupuncture in the EMR.

We have some idea as to how curious the pseudo-medical practice of naturopaths and their ilk can be. If you peruse the internet you can see the breadth of pseudo-medical services are offered by naturopaths.

But now that the EMR is being used by pseudo-medical providers we are going to have an opportunity to see just how pseudo-medical providers practice. I suspect it will be even goofier than I can imagine.

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