When All Green isn’t All Good 5/5 (34)

Do you ever get a patient who is extremely sick, yet their graph shows a lot of green? We often get phone calls and e-mails from concerned practitioners wondering how a very unhealthy patient could have such a great looking graph. Actually there are some very simple answers to this question which I would like to share, but first let’s take a look at a patient of mine.

Case Study:

A 68-year-old extremely obese patient presented in my office with an inability to walk normally, dizziness, shaking, and irritability. She had just gotten over a bout of diarrhea that lasted a week and left her feeling completely drained (no pun intended). She has a history of phlegm congestion, lower back pain, and abdominal masses.

I could tell by looking at my patient and talking to her that she was in extremely poor health.  So, why does the graph look so good? We all get excited and want to celebrate when we see a lot of green on a graph, right? But, sometimes seeing a lot of green on a graph can be deceiving. Low readings can be caused by multiple reasons:

#1: Inadequate moisture on the probe tip: Make sure the cotton tip is wet, but not dripping. Use standard tap water, not distilled water. You may also use saline solution if you prefer.

#2: Patients with very dry skin: Occasionally you will encounter a patient with very dry skin and very low readings, particularly during cold, dry weather.

#3: Elderly patients: Older patients generally tend to read lower overall.

#4: Reading Jing-Well points: These points tend to read lower overall than source points.

#5: Finally–VERY POOR HEALTH leading to very low energy.


As you know, AcuGraph calculates an average for all the meridian readings and uses this as the basis for the graph calculations. If this average is very low, this may indicate an overall low Chi level in the patient. Along with balancing the readings, this low Chi level should be addressed. When the Chi level is VERY low, the graph will tend to be all green because there simply aren’t enough variations in the readings to categorize anything as excess or deficient.

In our Advanced Training Seminar Series–Module 6, we teach how to increase energy levels for patients with VERY POOR HEALTH leading to very low energy. The graph might look perfect (all green) but the patient really has some important issues that need to be addressed. We suggest that you stimulate all of the Jing-Well points for this patient with an electrical stimulating unit. If you do not have an electrical stimulating unit you could needle, use tacks or even use a laser to stimulate the Jing-Well points. This will help to bring the pulses up, which in turn will bring the energy levels up.

In my private practice, I have a couple of favorite methods for increasing the energy levels:

Acupuncture points:

  • First balance the graph. If it is all green, then you would skip this step; but if there are any imbalances, balance the graph first by treating what is indicated.
  • Once the graph is balanced, I address a low Chi level by treating  Spleen 6, Stomach 36, and CV 12 with moxa. I also like to add CV 17 and Lung 9. I find these points to be extremely useful in helping to boost the overall energy level.

Chinese herbs:

  • Sometimes acupuncture with moxa is not enough and you may want to add herbal supplements to boost energy levels.
  • If a patient has extreme chi and blood deficiency, one of my favorite formulas is 202 SP–Shi Quan Da Bu Pian. The TCM actions for this formula include strengthening chi and blood, increasing yang chi, and strengthening the Wei Chi (immune system).
  • If the patient has extreme yang deficiency, consider prescribing 401 KI–Jin Gui Shen Qi Pian. The TCM actions for this formula include warming and strengthening Kidney yang.


Once you get the Chi energy level to increase for your patient–the graph will typically look worse. In this case, worse is actually better because the real underlying problems will finally become apparent.  At this point you can treat the graph findings and begin to see progress in restoring balance. Once the energy levels have risen and the patient’s health has rightfully improved, you can then celebrate the fact that they have a perfect graph.



Additional Information: If you want to take a look at a similar case and explanation, Click Here.

Have a great week everyone. And for our friends in the USA, I hope that your Thanksgiving celebration is PERFECT!



Kimberly Thompson, L.Ac.

Acupuncture Research Analyst

Miridia Technology Inc.

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Dr. Kimberly Thompson, DACM, L.Ac.

Dr. Kimberly Thompson, DACM, L.Ac. is a US licensed acupuncturist in the state of Idaho and certified in the treatment of acupuncture, Oriental medicine and Chinese herbology by the National Certification Commission of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM). Kimberly wears multiple hats in the acupuncture community. She owns her private clinic, Meridian Family Acupuncture. She has spent the last 10 years working for Miridia Technology as an acupuncture Research Analyst–where she helps plan, develop, and integrate modern diagnostic and treatment tools for the ever-evolving scientific world of acupuncture. Kimberly is a world-renown teacher, blogger, columnist, and mentor in the acupuncture community.

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