Odisha Swastha Seva Sangha

Methods of Locating Meridian Points



              Each point has its own location. Treatment on exact location of a given point will give significant therapeutic result. There are four common methods which are usually applied in locating points.

I.       Method of Finger Use :

This method uses the length and breadth of certain parts of a patients finger(s) as a criterion for locating points. The unit which is used in finger method in acupressure to measure the distance is called ‘CUN’. In an average adult one cun is usually 2cm. Generally, four methods are applied in terms of finger measurement. Here for better understanding CUN has been converted into Fin (Finger).

a)Thumb Measurement : The breadth of the thumb is considered as 1 cun. This method is often used for locating points that are close to each other.

b)Two Finger Measurement : Here, for measurement, the breadth of index and middle finger are taken as 1.5 cun.

c)Three Finger Measurement : The combined breadth of 3 (index, middle ring) fingers are taken as 2 cun, for measurement of points location.

d)Four Finger Measurement : The combined breadth formed by four (index, middle, ring and little) fingers is considered as 3 cun.


II.    Method of Anatomical Landmarks :

This is a common method where anatomical marking such as, the skeleton, muscles and limbs of the human body form some special prominences and hollows on the body’s surface. Eyebrows, hairlines and skin creases are also used as a guideline to locate points.

a)    Fixed Landmarks : There are certain fixed landmarks which can be directly referred to while locating points. For example; UB-40–situated at the middle of the knee crease, UB-2–located at the nose end of the eyebrow, Tw-23 is at the outer side end of the eyebrow, Lu-5 and P-3 are on the elbow crease.

b)    Motional Landmarks :Motional landmarks are found when the body is put to a specific posture. For example, two hollow appears on the shoulder when the arm is raised to the side, parallel to the ground level. The hollow in front portion of the shoulder is Li-15 while the back one is Tw-14. GB-31 may be located by asking the patient to stand with stretched hands by the side of the body. Now the point is located where the middle finger touches the outer side of thigh.


III.    Method of Simple Measurement :

Simple measurement indicates methods usually used in practice for locating points, as in following examples.
 i)    To locate Lu-3, raise the arm so that the tip of the nose touches the upper arm;

ii)    To locate GB-21, put your hand on the shoulder of the patient, with the first transverse crease of the wrist resting on the lower border of the scapular spine, the thumb touching the lower border of the cervical spine and the rest of the four fingers on the shoulder, with the middle finger slightly bend. The spot where the tip of the middle finger touches is the point;

iii)    To locate Liv-13, lower the upper arm with elbow bent in vertical angle, the spot where the end of the elbow touches is the point; and

iv)    To locate Du-20, fold the ears forward and take a vertical line from their tips to the top of the head.


IV.    Method of Proportional Measurement :

In this method some prominent anatomical landmarks as well as their distance space are used as a tool to locate the points. The practically useful measurements are given below:

i)    From the forehead hairline to backside (neck) hairline is 16 fingers (12 cun).

ii)    From the backside (neck) hairline to the tip of 7th cervical vertebra – 4 fingers (3 cun).

iii)    Forehead hairlines to mid eyebrows – 4 fingers (3 cun).

iv)    In between the fold of front side arm pit and elbow-crease – 12 fingers (9 cun)

v)    In between elbow crease to wrist crease – 16 fingers (12 cun)

vi)    In between two nipples – 11 fingers (8 cun)

vii)    From the lower border of the mid of the chest (sternum) to naval – 11 fingers (8 cun).

viii) From the centre of the naval to the pubic bone – 7 fingers (5 cun).