Wet Cupping

13/10/19

Wet cupping is a more invasive version of cupping (see previous post). Wet cupping involves cutting the skin before placing the heated cups on the skin and this causes the patient to bleed during the procedure. It is essentially modern day blood letting and was also a technique used by doctors for blood letting in the west prior to modern medicine. The practice dates back thousands of years and was a favourite of Muhammad, leading to it becoming popular with Islamic scientists who developed the method further. It eventually spread into Europe and Asia and is incredibly popular in China today. It has also been particular popular in Finland since the 15th Century, usually in saunas.

Cupping doesn’t have much support in scientific literature. Numerous reviews in the 2010s showed there was little evidence backing the efficacy of the treatment for most conditions and noted poor trial quality and research methods in the papers supporting it, whatever the specific method of cupping used. Critics have described it as quackery and that it has no place in modern medicine. It effectively works no better than a placebo. Among the treatments that it is claimed cupping can help with are weight loss, back pain and muscle tension.

As well as the practice being ineffective at treating anything it can lead to problems such as bruising, infection of the skin and pain more generally. There’s also research to suggest it could be harmful for people with blood pressure issues or heart problems. It can lead to the bursting of capillaries and fluid accumulation in tissues. It is very much advised that you stay clear this and other forms of cupping and keep your money in your wallets.

  • Meetup Events
  • Facebook Page
  • Twitter
  • Instagram
  • Podcast
  • Newsletter
  • Donate at Patreon

© 2018 The Edinburgh Skeptics Society

SCVO Logo