Acupuncture Points Notebook

: Hunmen : Gate of the Ethereal Soul

Bl-47 : Foot Taiyang Bladder 47

Spirit point
One of the "59 piercings" for clearing Heat in Su Wen Ch. 61
Master Tung's Five Mountain Ranges

3 cun lateral to the midline, level with the lower border of the spinous process of the ninth thoracic vertebra (T9) and level with Ganshu Bl-18.

Oblique insertion 0.3 - 0.5 cun

Deep perpendicular or deep oblique needling in a medial direction carries a substantial risk of causing a pneumothorax.

TCM Actions:
Spreads liver qi and relaxes the sinews
Harmonises the middle jiao

TCM Indications:
  • Fullness and distension of the chest and lateral costal region, back pain, contraction of the sinews, bone and joint pain of the whole body, corpse collapse walking disorder, aversion to wind and cold.
  • Difficult ingestion, vomiting, diarrhoea, borborygmus, irregular defecation, dark urine.

    Superficial Innervation: Posterior cutaneous thoracic nerves from T9
    Dermatome Segment: T9

    Like the other outer Bladder points of the five Zang, despite being named after their spiritual aspect, they have little indication for treatment of psychological disorders in the classical literature but are mainly used for draining heat from their corresponding Zang (Deadman et al, 2001). One possible answer to this is that the Shen is often agitated by excessive Heat making clearing Heat from the Zang a possible protocol for calming the mind.


    In one example of using the outer back Shu points to treat psychological disorders, Wang Yu-Ji reported using this point and Pohu Bl-42 in the treatment of sleepwalking in children (Wang & Robertson, 2008, Applied Channel Theory).


    In five element acupuncture indicated for a wood cf, issues of anger a/or resentment, lack of sense of purpose in life, depression, drug a/or alcohol abuse issues.


    The "59 piercings" are named in the Su Wen Ch. 61 and mentioned in Su Wen Ch. 32 and Ling Shu Ch. 23 for treating Heat diseases. This point along with Pohu Bl-42, Shentang Bl-44, Yishe Bl-49 and Zhishi Bl-52 clear Heat from the five Zang.


    Jeffrey Yuen (2005, 3 Spirits & 7 Souls) suggests for inability to express anger we can direct the Yuan qi to here for expression by needling Ganshu Bl-18 outwards and then this point relatively perpedicularly.
    For excessive anger we can direct it back to the Zang by needling this point obliquely towards the inner Bladder line and then needling Ganshu Bl-18 downwards.


    In Master Tung's system this point is one of the five mountain ranges (Wu Ling). They consist of five sets of points in three lines representing the phases of the Wu Xing in a series of lines:

    The first set is along the midline, below each vertebrae from T2 to T11. From T2 to T8 relate to Fire, T9 to T11 relate to Earth.
    The second set is 3 cun from the midline. from T2 to T9. From T2 to T6 relate to Metal, T7 to T9 relate to Wood.
    The third set is 6 cun from the midline from T2 to T8. From T2 to T4 relate to Metal, T5 to T8 relate to Wood.

    They are indicated for fever, common cold, hypertension, headache, lumbar pain, numbness of the hands and feet, hemiplegia, acute stomachache, vomiting or acute enteritis by releasing heat, wind and stagnation from the organs relating to their phase and treated with a pricking method to release a drop of blood (McCann, 2014, Pricking the Vessels).

    This sort of technique may make greater sense than regular needles as shallow depth without retention may be safer over the spine and lungs.

    Reference Notes: (click to display)