A HEALTHY Chinese New Year from Ahealth.co.uk!

A HEALTHY Chinese New Year from Ahealth.co.uk!… as we look further at the links (and differences!) between Hijama (Cupping) and Acupuncture

A Happy Chinese New Year of the Ox to all!

As mentioned in a previous post, I was surprised to learn that cupping (hijaama) and acupuncture seem to be linked in some ways. At the same time there seem to be some major differences!

So as a comparison, I will now attempt to list in simple terms, both the similarities and the differences as I (an ordinary Joe Blog(!)) understand it:


1) Both therapies are classed as ‘alternative’ therapies not understood or recognised by ‘conventional’ Western medicine.

2) Both hijama and acupuncture seem to be using the same Meridians and Acupoints Charts (see image).

3) Therefore, both therapies believe in the strange Meridians-in-the-Body Theory where ‘invisible’ energy is supposed to be flowing.

However I think that’s where the similarities end (if you know of any more, please leave a comment). So now for the differences:


1) First and foremost, and the most obvious: Hijama is Arabic / Muslim, while acupuncture is Chinese.

2) Hijama involves removing ‘bad blood’ (ie a detox) from the body by using suction cups on incisions made around the acupoints while acupuncture involves inserting needles on the acupoints to manipulate and fine-tune energy flow in the meridians to rebalance the energy in the body.

3) Preferred or optimal time to have hijama therapy is on or near full-moon (ie on or around the 15th of the lunar calendar), which seems to be related to the effects of the moon’s gravity on the body (ie hijama works best at full gravitational pull of the moon on the body, which we as humans don’t normally feel in our day to day lives). There are, as far as I am aware, no such indications for acupuncture.

Once again, anyone have anything to add to this, please leave a comment.

So in a nutshell, hijama is like an oil-change of the human body, while acupuncture is, well, maybe a bit like fine-tuning the spark-plugs of a car’s engine so they spark at the right time and provide optimum energy for the running of the car (sorry unless you are into cars or a mechanic, this may not make much sense to you!). In a similar way, acupuncture is supposed to fine-tune the energy flow for the optimum running of the human body.

If you want to know more about how both these similar-yet-different therapies are supposed to work on the human body (and IF they work!), then please leave me you first-name and email address so I can alert you on future posts, as I have made it my personal mission to find out.

Peace & Health until next time!


PS: Next time, I am hoping to do a post titled: “An Introduction to Hijama by a practising therapist” which will actually be, as the title suggests, a guest-post from a practising Female Hijama Therapist called Umm Husamuddin. So watch this space.



Comments: 3

  1. Posted by abu zakariya 31 Jan 2009 at 4:46 am Reply

    Excellent resource
    keep up the good work


  2. Posted by Br Rizwhan of Cardiff 01 Feb 2009 at 7:15 am Reply

    Assalaamu alaykum,
    My name is Rizwhan & I am a hijamah therapist & final year chiropractic medical student. I am also in my final leg of the 6 month hijamah course accredited by the complementary medical association.
    I have practiced hijamah for awhile now and have been in chiropractic clinical practice for almost a year. For those interested it might be worth having a look into chiropractic philosophy as there is a degree of overlap with hijamah, as well as with other traditional treatment modalities.
    The overlap I am talking about is not to do with the alignment of the spine (and so called “subluxations”) but to do with achieving optimal bodily function through maintaining spinal (& CNS) health to its optimal level.
    It might be interesting to know that the venous drainage system of the spine is quite unique in that it lacks valves meaning it is not as easy for venous blood (or bad blood) to drain back to the heart preventing fresh blood from providing nutrients and riding waste. This deep venous network is linked with the superficial venous drainage allowing the low pressure of hijamah to draw out “the bad blood” from deep within the spine enabling the nervous system to be nourished & cleansed of waste. The same principle applies for hijamah on the head especially over the cerebral sinuses as these can influence the cerebrospinal fluid replenishment (nourishment of the brain) through their relation with the blood brain barrier thus effecting the function of the whole body by optimizing nourishment & function of the brain.
    There are also many other applications of hijamah in a conventional medical sense as it is after all one of the best forms of anti inflammatory treatment with the most minimal and un-detrimental side effects. The implications of this are huge as so many ailments (in orthodox medicine) are a result of inflammation.

    In the traditional medical perspective there are also obviously many beneficial applications well beyond my scope of understanding but do, as mentioned in this post, share a lot with Chinese (and Indian) traditional medicine in the use of the meridian systems. I have to my amazement seen astonishing results, in treating a range of conditions- asthma in particular. Like you I am too still a student in this field and know there is a lot to learn but through experience I am learning that hijamah is truly a great blessing upon the Ummah.
    Sorry to go on but just to add to your post hijamah can actually be used in conjunction with acupuncture. So I think they complement each other in that way, although different in their actions.


    Rizwhan Suleman, Cardiff

  3. Posted by Ahealth 01 Feb 2009 at 5:22 pm Reply

    Salams Br Abu Zakariya & Br Rizwhan

    Thank you both for your comments, especially for the fact that you are both hijama therapists, which was one of the objectives for setting up this blog (ie to get more information from people who know about the therapy), the other main objective being getting feedback and testimonials from patients who have had the therapy.

    @Br Rizwhan, your comment is quite detailed and could have been a post in itself! Thanks for that. In fact, as agreed separately with Br Abu Zakariya and Sr Umm Husamuddin (a lady therapist who commented on a previous post), it would be a previlege and highly informative for our blog readers to have guest-posts written by Hijama therapists now and again, explaining and enligtening us about this mysterious therapy. So I hope you will be happy to do that for us in the near future, and share with us your particular expertise and experience in this regard in the form of a guest blog-post, like you have done in such detail in your above comment.

    And it is interesting to learn the link with chiropractic, as well as the peculiar blood drainage system of the spine, which can be helped by hijama as well as the effect of hijama on the head. I also note your comments about hijaama being one of the best anti-inflammatory treatments as well as your positive experience in treating conditions like asthma.

    It is experiences like these which can maybe help us revive and promote this forgotten Sunnah therapy which I would personally describe as "The Oil-change for the Human Body" or "The Fastest, most Direct Detox known to Humankind".

    So keep it up.


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