54 years old male: hypersensitive in smelling and headache from it

Male 54
He is extremely sensitive with chemical smell. There is a plastic factory near his house, and the smell gives him daily. He feel if nothing helps he has to move!  He even suffers from the smell of the heater in his car during winter time.
MC: headache and tight chest due to certain smell  for 7 years
Smell is mostly chemical smell, developed working in a factory he was working.
Also he has daily headache and tight chest from factory smell near the house.
His reaction is immediate.
  • Nothing alleviates the symptoms. Just avoiding the smell is only way to cope with the issue, so close the windows and such
  • worse with staying in the environment
No western diagnose, went through a few tests, but all came negative.
  • Pain – Low back (diagnosed with degenerative disc, and was very severe and had to quit working. No surgery was done. Better now with some training and acupuncture)
    • Usually pain is 1/10 but if he moves and do something wrong, can give 6/10 pain, which is better with rest, heat and acupuncture.
  • Pain 2 – shoulder and arm – numbness, pins and needle feeling. He thinks it is from knots in the shoulder. better over time.
Other symptoms:
  • No tremor, No skin issues.
  • Night sweat once a while, not often.
  • Aversion to cold, damp cold, and summer heat (like dry heat)
  • Cough with phlegm, easy to expectorate, rice porridge like chunks (clear, yellow, can be brown)
  • Sore throat last 2-3 days, often clearing throat
  • No thirst particularly, but like drinking warm all day. Summer drinks lots of cold. But like drinking cold beer. occasional coffee, 10-15 beers a week.
  • Appetite OK, no symptoms before and after meal. Eat breakfast ok.
  • 2-3 meals a day with fast food lunch 1/week. Feel binge eating once a month.
  • Urination is 4-6 times a day, but more with coffee. 0-2 night time urination.
  • Stool is loose with vegetarian food which he eats everyday, but if he eats any animal (meat, tuna) stool is formed. Everyday 1-2 a day.
  • Sleep good. often remember dream, but no issues with sleeping.
  • Easy to get overwhelmed, stressed out, irritable, once a while get angry.
  • Libido ok, but takes effort to have an orgasm.
  • Pulse: Not rapid, not, wiry, not slippery, not tight or thin… may be large?
  • Tongue Pink, swollen, crack


Diagnosis: Three Yang Tai Yin 

  • Tai Yang – Back and Shoulder pain, Night Sweat
  • Yang Ming (Secondary Damp Heat –> most severe) – Aversion to heat, summer heat, irritable, Night Sweat, vivid dreams
  • Shao Yang (mild) – upper heat
  • Tai Yin body fluid deficiency –> root cause – sensitive smell, loose stool, frequent urination, phlegm, easily overwhelmed

Formula: Chai Hu Jia Long Gu Mu Li Tang minus Da Huang plus Zhi Zi, Jie Geng, Hou Po, Shi Gao, Cang Zhu

Chai hu 12g, Huang qin 10g, dang shen 10g, Ban xia 25g Sheng jiang 15g, Da zao 20g, Gui zhi 20g, Fu ling 15g, Long gu 20g, Mu li 20g, Cang zhu 20g, Zhi zi 15g, Jie geng 12g, Hou po 10g, Shi gao 45g.

One months later: No shoulder pain or any pain, Phlegm changed to thicker and sticker brown phlegm. The neighbour plastic factory was still generating the chemical smell, so headache was still there. However, he said his mood is much better.

Continued the same herb for another month. Then his night sweat disappeared. No aversion to wind and cold.  His mood and irritability is still remain good. I added Da Huang 3g and Huang Lian 3g. He had loose stool, but with the low dosage Da Huang moves stagnation of Qi, Blood and Dampness.

One month later he said he did not have headache from his car this winter.




Published by Yumi Ridsdale R.TCNP. R.Ac

From Japan. Living in Canada since 2001. I am a registered practitioner of Chinese Medicine with special interest in Classic herbal therapies.

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