Ḥijāmah (Cupping Therapy): Special Reference to Neuromuscular Disorders

  • MB Naleem PG Scholar, Department of Moalajat, School of Unani Medical Education and Research, Jamia Hamdard, New Delhi, India.
  • Md Wasi Akhtar Assistant Professor, Department of Moalajat, School of Unani Medical Education and Research, Jamia Hamdard, New Delhi, India.
  • Yasmeen Shamsi Professor, Department of Moalajat, School of Unani Medical Education and Research, Jamia Hamdard, New Delhi, India.
  • Farkhunda Jabin Associate Professor, Department of Ilaj bil Tadbeer, School of Unani Medical Education and Research, Jamia Hamdard, New Delhi, India.
  • Mohd Maaz Associate Professor, Department of Mahiyatul Amraz, School of Unani Medical Education and Research, Jamia Hamdard, New Delhi, India.
Keywords: Wet Cupping, Sciatica, Lower Back Pain, Neck Pain


The use of ḤijÄmah dates back to 3500 BC in Egypt, with records in Ebers Papyrus. But in the last two decades, ḤijÄmah is gaining its due acceptance in the management of different neuromuscular and pain disorders.
For sciatica, ḤijÄmah is advised over the sciatic nerve. ḤijÄmah with 2 cups (over the gluteal area and thigh/ over calf muscle and below the ankle), with 5 cups and even with 9 cups may be done in patients of sciatica. These different settings/ protocols of ḤijÄmah in patients with sciatica show a significant reduction in pain and disability.
ḤijÄmah for lower back pain is indicated on acupuncture points BL23, BL24, and BL25 by application of 2 cups on each site, either simultaneously or in a phased manner (in 3 sittings on weekly basis; cupping at one site at once, followed by next point in the next week). According to the Persian traditional method, ḤijÄmah between the scapula (on day 0), then at the sacrum (on day 3) and over the calf muscle (on day 6) gives good results in lower back pain.
ḤijÄmah (wet cupping) over the painful area of the neck with multiple cups (2-6) in a single sitting is the preferred method for non-specific neck pain.
Even ḤijÄmah without scarification (ḤijÄmah bila Shará¹­) has a short-term effect in all such conditions, but ḤijÄmah (wet cupping) gives spontaneous as well as long-term benefits in almost all neuromuscular and other pain disorders.
Therefore, ḤijÄmah comes as a better alternative with minimally invasive procedures for most neuromuscular disorders.

How to cite this article:
Naleem MB, Akhtar MW, Shamsi Y, Jabin F, Maaz M. ḤijÄmah (Cupping Therapy): Special Reference to Neuromuscular Disorders. Chettinad Health City Med J. 2022;11(4):86-91.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.24321/2278.2044.202244


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