Tongue Diagnosis Typical Case

Syndrome of Stomach-Yin Deficiency
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Body colour: red, tending to purple
Body shape: very swollen, Stomach crack.
Coating: yellow, rootless, dry.

The red body colour indicates Heat while its slightly purple hue indicates that there is some Blood stasis. The very swollen body shape indicates the presence of Phlegm. The red colour, together with the Stomach crack and the yellow coating, indicates that the Heat is located in the Stomach. This is confirmed by the rootless coating which indicates the beginning of Stomach-Yin deficiency, from the Heat injuring Yin. The dryness of the coating confirms both the Heat and the Yin deficiency.

This tongue has a rootless but relatively thick coating: this is doubly bad. Why? The rootlessness of the coating indicates that there is the beginning of Yin deficiency but the relative thickness of it indicates that there is a pathogenic factor, in this case, Stomach-Heat: thus, this patient suffers from a Full condition occurring against a background of Stomach deficiency. In other words, it would have been better if the coating had been either rootless but thin (indicating Yin deficiency but no pathogenic factor) or thick with root (indicating the presence of a pathogenic factor but also a good state of the Stomach).
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