Winter Skin 5/5 (32)

Skin is amazing, but what can I say? It’s not perfect…

As you’re no doubt aware, the skin is the largest organ in the human body, and also the most visible for that matter. It does an amazing job of keeping our insides in and everything else out, while regulating temperature, growing hair, generating vitamin D, repelling infection, and sending massive amounts of sensory input to our brains. And it does all of these amazing things while continuously being worn away and replaced. In fact, your skin completely replaces itself every 28 days.

So what’s not to love?


Winter usually means cold weather and dry indoor conditions due to heating processes. Dry, chapped skin can be the result, and it, in turn, can make graphing more difficult. Here are a couple of conditions to watch for this Winter. (And for those of you in the Southern hemisphere, save these tips for later. Winter will eventually come.)

winter skin conditions

  1. Dry Skin: In general, dry skin will tend to read lower on the graph, due to decreased conductivity between the epidermis and the dermal layers. Of course, the moistened probe tip helps somewhat to normalize moisture during the reading, but when the outer layers are very dry, the moistened tip will not entirely overcome the conductivity problems. Dry skin reads lower, and there’s little that can be done to change this. Therefore, if your patient is showing a rather low average, you need not worry that there isn’t enough qi. Rather, it just may be seasonably dry skin.
  2. Chapped Skin: When the skin becomes extremely dry, it tends to become chapped. Redness, inflammation, cracking and pain may result. From a graphing standpoint, chapped skin will tend to read very high–often quickly climbing all the way to 200. If the skin is chapped,  you can assume the graph will not be valid.
  3. In Between. This is the skin that will drive you crazy. It’s clearly dry, but not reading particularly low. Except in spots. While other spots are not quite inflamed, but are definitely chapped, and even cracked. They’ll read high.

Here’s a graph of some in-between skin:

As you can see, it makes for a pretty bad graph. Ranging from 13 clear up to 176, and nearly everything split, this is the kind of graph that might lead you to conclude the patient is in pretty bad shape.

But here’s the same patient 13 hours later with NO TREATMENT:

Look better? Note that the pattern is basically unchanged. However, everything is more stable and the differences are less pronounced.

Here are both graphs for comparison:

So what made the difference? Well the first exam was performed at the end of the day, after the patient had spent a day working, cleaning, washing hands, washing dishes, etc. The skin was very dry and depleted of natural oils and moisture. Now, I’m not just referring to the daily hand washing and chores we all do. This was rather more extreme, with lots of cleaning and exposure to cleaning products.

The second exam was performed the next morning, before the patient had started working, and after the skin had rested and replenished itself somewhat.

Of course, on some patients, and in some parts of the world, skin dryness will not be an issue. But for most of the rest of us, at least from time to time, we’ll need to make sure the imbalances we’re seeing are the result of actual meridian qi, and not just winter skin.

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Dr. Adrian Larsen

Adrian P. Larsen, D.C., F.A.S.A., C.Ac. Dr. Larsen is President of Miridia Technology Inc., and one of the developers of the AcuGraph Digital Meridian Imaging system. He currently divides his time between research, product development, and teaching. Dr. Larsen also holds certifications in Applied Kinesiology and CPK, and has specialized training in SOT and craniopathy. He, his wife, and 7 children reside in Meridian, Idaho.

19 Replies to “Winter Skin

  1. Thanks Adrian,
    You make some relevant points about various skin conditions and how they affect the Acugraph results. The climate I work in is coastal and temperate to sub tropical (more so with global warming) with mild slightly dry winters and humid summers with the occasional very hot, dry period. Usually the skin conditions I see (as distinct from daily or work related variations) are more of the psoriasis and excema type. Your post is a timely reminder of the effect of even small changes in daily activities on our energetic state. I’ll certainly keep these factors in mind when Acugraphing. Cheers

    1. Hello Carlos,

      You can graph a cancer patient with AcuGraph and treat what shows up on the graph, but AcuGraph will not determine if a patient has cancer. Acupuncture is a great tool to treat side effects from cancer and cancer treatments.


  2. What is your suggestion one dealing with dry skin with lotion. Would normal application of lotion help to keep a person with dry skin from skewing the graph?

  3. Since winter dry skin is a problem in my practice locale, any suggestions to help compensate for this measuring error other than wait till spring to use the Acugraph. Thanks.

  4. I’ve been using Acugraph for a year and has been a useful tool in the diagnosis, I am satisfied with its performance.
    A problem that I faced when taking readings with AcuGraph is with patients suffering from hyperhidrosis on hands and feet, but the readings are too high with the high humidity of the skin, and there is no differentiation between channels.
    I’m planning to experiment with aluminum chloride hexahydrate (Drysol) in patients with hyperhidrosis and to take more realistic and differentiated readings.
    Does anyone have any way to deal with this problem and AcuGraph may be useful to these patients?
    Thank you in advance.

    1. I haven’t run across this problem before, though I know others have. I’m posting this question over at the user forum to see if anyone else has experience with hyperhydrosis.

  5. I live in Adelaide, South Australia where dry skin is a problem all year round. Summer (now) is worse as we get very high temperatures and very low humidity. I have noticed problems when using Meridian tapping (EFT) and the local remedy is to get the client to drink a glass of water with a small amount of sea salt added. This improves hydration and the conductivity of the meridians. I dont know if this will also help acugraph but it may be worth a try.
    PS I am expecting delivery of my AcuGraph 4 tomorrow so I will be able to update this info once I have sufficient data.
    Thank you to everyone for all the valuable info.

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