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The Western Urological System
An Overview of TCM Kidney

The TCM understanding of the kidney is more extensive than the Western understanding of the anatomical kidney, regarding it as the root of life and the origin of our individuality as human beings. It is no wonder that the kidneys are considered to be one of the most important organs in the body in TCM. They perform genital, urinary, endocrine, skeletal, blood, and central nervous system functions as well as store primordial yin and primordial yang (known as inherited or kidney yin and yang) which are attributive to the water and fire elements of the body respectively.

The major physiological functions of the TCM kidneys include:

1. Storing essence for reproduction, blood production, growth and development, and preventing evils or pathogens from invading the body.
2. Controlling water/fluid balance in the body.
3. Helping to control respiration through the grasping of qi.
4. Producing strong healthy bones and bone marrow.
5. Producing healthy hair.
6. Connecting with the ears to control hearing.
7. Opening into the urethra and anus.
TCM Kidneys