An English teacher returned from Washington, D.C. and came to see me. She told me her nose was running like water. I took her pulse: it was not rapid, not floating, she did not feel chilly, and she had no fever. As I was taking the pulse, I tried to note whether or not she had a ‘tight’ pulse, which would help me to make a diagnosis as ‘Wind Cold.’ As it turned out the pulse was tight. (If the pulse was not tight I would have to re-establish my judgment.) I put one needle in her joint valley and one needle in her forehead between her eyebrows. In about 15 minutes she felt better.
I also gave her herb tea to drink. As she was drinking, she began to feel warmer, and the running nose stopped and she felt better. She asked me, “Is this a flu?” I replied, “There are many kinds of flu, but what you have is different. We call it “Wind Cold” because your pulse is very tight and you have a running nose. The nature of the herbs is to warm up your body and make you feel better. Use your imagination: if the boiler is not hot enough, the water cannot be transformed into steam; if is not steam, it begins dripping down. In your case, your trip exhausted you, your energy ran down, and the “cold wind” caught you. Then your lungs could not function as well, and that is why you have a running nose.”
She came back for more acupuncture treatment within a few days, and by that time her Wind Cold was gone.