Clinical Indication of UB60 (Kun Lun, 崑崙)
BASIC INFO FROM THE TEXTS
1. Location: in the depression between the external malleolus and tendon calcaneous
2. Actions: expel Wind, remove obstructions from the channel, relax the sinews and muscles, strengthen the back, clear Heat, invigorate the Blood
3. Eastern Indications: headache, blurred vision, neck rigidity, epistaxis, shoulder/back/arm pain, swelling/pain of the heel, difficult labor, epilepsy
4. Western Indications: headache, stiff neck, goiter, low back pain, sciatica, paralysis of the lower limb, diseases of the ankle joint and surrounding soft tissues
Kunlun is the name of one of the longest mountain chains in Asia. It runs westwards more than 3,000 km from the northern part of the Tibetan plateau to form the border range of Northern Tibet. The highest mountain in the whole Kunlun mountain chain is Kunlun Goddess, reaching heights of up to 7,167m. The shape of Kunlun Goddess so closely mirrors the shape of the external malleolus that I believe UB60 is named after Kunlun Goddess rather than the whole Kunlun mountain chain.
2. REBELLIOUS COLD QI
UB60 is very good for headaches (esp. occipital) or dizziness due to rebellious Cold Qi from the lower burner rising up to attack the head. The name Kunlun (mountain) implies the rebellious Qi rising up.
3. OCCIPITAL HEADACHE
UB60 is an important point for occipital headache and dizziness. Visualize the entire human body superimposed onto the image of a leg, so that the head corresponds to the foot. Using this imagery, the location of UB60 is at the back of the head/neck.
4. DAYBREAK DIARRHEA
With extreme KD/SP Yang deficiency, one can suffer from daybreak diarrhea. In Chinese, Daybreak diarrhea is called "Cock's Crow Diarrhea (鷄鳴下利)" or "Five AM diarrhea (五更泄瀉)," because one suffering from this symptom has diarrhea when a Cock/Rooster cries in the early morning around 5am. This diarrhea usually comes with abdominal pain and coldness of the lower limbs. KD3 is the Yuan-Source point of the Kidney which can tonify KD, however it's not a Fire point. UB60 is a "Fire element" point located on the opposite side of KD3, therefore UB60 can bring Fire energy to KD3 from the other side. Moxa at RN4 should be combined for effective treatment.
5. THREE DIRECTIONS
Depending on the disease, the direction of needling can be changed. When choosing UB60 for headache or dizziness, needle toward the head. If needling UB60 for heel pain or plantar fasciitis, needle toward the heal. Needle UB60 toward the root of the external malleolus with oblique angle in cases of ankle sprain.
6. CONTRAINDICATED FOR PREGNANCY
During pregnancy, points on lower burner (front and back) are forbidden. Since UB60 can strongly influence the lower back, this point is also forbidden. Other contraindicated points for pregnancy are LI4, SP6, UB67, and GB21.
7. KOREAN YIN-YANG BALANCING ACUPUNCTURE
UB60 (Kunlun) is one of the most popular points I use in my practice since we see a lot of neck, back and leg pain patients. If the pain is only on one side of the UB channel or if symptoms on one side are more severe than on the other side, tonify UB60 on the side that has more severe pain; sedate UB60 on the other side. This application is used because UB60 is a Fire point. In "Channel Dynamics" we tonify the Fire point on the affected channel. In addition, modern TCM texts also show, according to "Point Indication," UB60 removes obstructions from the whole UB channel including head, neck, back, and leg. This point may be especially effective for treating pain because from both a "Channel Dynamics" perspective and "Point Indication" perspective it is a powerful point for UB channel pain.